Ex-South Carolina cop sentenced to 20 years in US

Ex-South Carolina cop sentenced to 20 years in US

"The Scott family is pleased", Rodney Scott said.

Slager shot and killed the 50-year-old Scott following a traffic stop for a busted taillight on April 4, 2015 while Slager was a member of the North Charleston Police Department. The two scuffled and Slager opened fire as Scott was running away, hitting him five times in the back. "Slager's actions were disproportional to Scott's misconduct".

A white former SC police officer has been sentenced to 20 years in prison for shooting an unarmed black motorist to death in 2015.

Before the sentence was handed down, the judge had to decide whether the shooting amounted to second-degree murder or manslaughter.

"No matter what sentence I give, neither the Scott family nor the Slager family is going to think that it's right", the judge said. The bystander video also shows Slager placing an item - his Taser - near Scott's body following the shooting.

A defense attorney says a white former SC law officer should be sentenced on the low end of guidelines being considered by a federal judge. His murder trial ended with a deadlocked jury past year, and prosecutors had vowed to retry Slager in state court. "I pray for you, that you would repent and let Jesus come in your life".

In the dashcam video, Slager is asking Scott questions about insurance and vehicle ownership.

U.S. District Judge David Norton announced his finding about the gravity of the killing of Scott, an African-American who was running away from police officer Michael Slager when Slager fired at him eight times, shortly after 10 a.m. Thursday.

While that case was ongoing, federal authorities pursued a parallel investigation against Slager on civil rights charges.

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A federal judge Thursday said he would consider the 2015 killing of unarmed Walter Scott by a North Charleston police officer to be a second-degree murder, not the lesser crime of voluntary manslaughter.

When Judge Norton asked Humphries whether he believed Scott's killing constituted a "righteous shooting", Humphries simply replied, "No".

The ruling comes as part of federal sentencing proceedings for Michael Slager.

During the trial, Slager testified that he was scared and felt "total fear that Mr. Scott was coming toward me".

Norton also said Slager obstructed justice when he made statements to state police after the shooting. Under questioning by Slager's attorney, Ghent said Monday the stun gun was never tested for fingerprints and that there was no reason for Slager to re-holster the weapon rather than leave it on the ground where it fell.

The judge said the crime was grave and Scott did not warrant being shot. He was later fired and charged with murder. He said that Slager and Scott had physically struggled before the shooting, and that explained the officer's state of mind.

The federal prosecution hammered in the fact that Scott was running away when the first shot was sacked and continued to run away until he fell.

On Thursday, attorneys are expected to call friends and relatives of both men who'll tell the judge how Scott's death and the officer's arrest have affected their lives.

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