Monday, 11 December, 2017

Louis ex-officer acquitted in killing of black man

U2 in Concert- Foxborough MA U2 Cancel Tonight's St. Louis Concert Due to Lack of Security
Erik Tate | 16 September, 2017, 01:10

About a dozen protesters have gathered near the Carnahan Courthouse in downtown St. Louis after a judge acquitted a white former St. Louis police officer of first-degree murder in the shooting death of a black man following a 2011 chase.

Stockley and his partner see what appears to be a drug transaction on the parking lot of a fast-food restaurant.

Stockley instructed his partner, who was driving the police SUV, to ram Smith's vehicle.

Stockley is relieved at the verdict, said his attorney, Neil Bruntrager.

A two-minute chase begins.

Assistant Circuit Attorney Robert Steele emphasized during the trial that police dashcam video of the chase captured Stockley saying he was "going to kill this (expletive), don't you know it". Police found a gun in Smith's auto, but only Stockley's DNA was on it, leading to accusations the officer had planted the weapon.

In his ruling, Judge Timothy Wilson said state prosecutors had "failed" to prove the case against the officer, Jason Stockley, who had been facing a first-degree murder charge for killing Anthony Lamar Smith, 24, inside his vehicle after a chase.

The acquittal of Jason Stockley in the death of 24-year-old Anthony Lamar Smith came amid concerns of significant unrest, but St. Louis Circuit Judge Timothy Wilson wrote that he was bound by the Code of Judicial Conduct to not be swayed by "partisan interests, public clamor or fear of criticism".

Stockley went in-and-out Smith's auto at least four times while 10 officer stood by, according to testifying officers.

Even as Irma batters the US, Hurricane Jose churns in the Atlantic
AST/EDT (0900 UTC), the center of Hurricane Jose was located near 26.1 degrees north latitude and 66.0 degrees west longitude. It lost a lot of its punch from earlier Tuesday and was as high as a Category 4 storm with winds around 155 miles per hour .

After Smith's auto slowed down near the intersection of Goodfellow and West Florissant, Stockley told the other officer to ram the vehicle, the probable cause statement said. Stockley emerged from the police cruiser with with a department-issued pistol and an AK-47 rifle - which the department has not permitted him to carry. Stockley is placed on desk duty.

The attorney for Anthony Lamar Smith's young daughter explains his next steps.

"I'm disappointed with the court's finding", Circuit Judge Kim Gardner, whose office prosecuted the case, said in a release, according to Newsweek.

During the trial, prosecutors grilled law enforcement witnesses on why Stockley was allowed to return to his police SUV and search Smith's silver Buick without wearing gloves and why the other responding officers did not give Smith first aid at the scene. He leaves the company in January 2016.

He also said he would be filing a motion in federal court for "a binding of contempt" against the lawyers of the city and the city of St. Louis, which he said was a rare move. St. Louis City and County police also said they were beginning 12-hour shifts Friday morning.

It was announced today that Jason Stockley, a former St. Louis police officer, was found not guilty of first-degree murder and armed criminal action in the shooting death of Lamar Smith. Under Missouri law, the judge could have considered finding Stockley guilty of Murder in the First Degree as charged or lessor crimes such as Murder in the Second Degree or Voluntary Manslaughter. Stockley is arrested at his home in Houston. "So, no justice, no peace", the 44-year-old St. Louis resident said.

Deliberations wrapped up August 9; since Stockley waived his right to a jury, his fate was ultimately decided by the presiding judge.

Stockley's trial begins with a crowd of spectators so large several people have to be turned away.

Protesters quickly started marching following the verdict and had tried to shut down the highway.

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