Prosecutors in the case against a Twin Cities area police officer who fatally wounded 32-year-old, Philando Castile, last year say statements the officer gave to state investigators should be admitted to trial.
According to KSTP, defense attorneys for Jeronimo Yanez are seeking to withhold an interview he conducted following the shooting incident. They are also reportedly seeking to dismiss the most serious charge against Yanez and exclude an expert witness.
Yanez, who was a member of the St. Anthony Police Department at the time, pulled Castile over for a minor traffic infraction in Falcon Heights, Minnesota. His partner, Joseph Kauser, was with him.
Castile was reportedly returning from the grocery store with his girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, and her four-year-old daughter on July 6, 2016. He was shot by the 28-year-old law enforcement official and his death sparked mass protest across the country.
Yanez’s defense attorneys have maintained that Castile reached for his gun during the stop, justifying the shooting, but prosecutors argued that Castile’s gun—which he had a license for—was properly concealed and that he never attempted to remove or draw it. The entire incident was webcast on Facebook live by Reynolds.
Yanez is charged with second-degree manslaughter and two other felonies related to Castile’s death.
A hearing is scheduled April 4. if convicted, Yanez faces up to 10 years in prison.
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