AF­TER­MATH OF S.C. MIS­TRIAL

The Denver Post - - FRONT PAGE - Mic Smith, The As­so­ci­ated Press

Judy Scott, Wal­ter Scott’s mother, is com­forted by her son Rod­ney as the fam­ily at­tor­neys, Chris Ste­wart, left, and Justin Bam­berg hold a news con­fer­ence af­ter a mis­trial was de­clared in the Michael Slager trial Mon­day in Charleston, S.C. A panel of one black and 11 white ju­rors — who had seemed close to a ver­dict to con­vict Fri­day, with ap­par­ently only one hold­out — said Mon­day they were un­able to reach a unan­i­mous de­ci­sion.

charleston, s.c.» A South Carolina judge de­clared a mis­trial Mon­day af­ter a jury dead­locked in the mur­der trial of a white for­mer po­lice of­fi­cer charged in the shoot­ing death of an un­armed black mo­torist.

A panel of one black and 11 white ju­rors — who had seemed close to a ver­dict to con­vict Fri­day, with ap­par­ently only one hold­out — said Mon­day they were un­able to reach a unan­i­mous de­ci­sion af­ter de­lib­er­at­ing more than 22 hours over four days.

“We as a jury re­gret to in­form the court that de­spite the best ef­forts of all par­ties we are un­able to come to a unan­i­mous de­ci­sion,” said Cir­cuit Judge Clifton New­man, read­ing a note from the jury be­fore declar­ing a mis­trial.

For­mer pa­trol­man Michael Slager was charged with mur­der in the April 4, 2015, shoot­ing death of 50year-old Wal­ter Scott. The judge had said the jury also could con­sider a lesser charge of vol­un­tary man­slaugh­ter.

Out­side the court­room, Scott’s mother and brother said jus­tice even­tu­ally will pre­vail.

“I’m not sad, be­cause I know jus­tice will be served,” Judy Scott said.

Asked whether he could for­give Slager, An­thony Scott said he could even­tu­ally “find the peace” to for­give the ex-of­fi­cer but not be­fore jus­tice is served.

“He gets to spend Christ­mas with his fam­ily,” he said of Slager.

Cell­phone video taken by a by­stander that showed Scott be­ing shot in the back five times was shown widely in the me­dia and on the in­ter­net and shocked the coun­try, in­flam­ing the na­tional de­bate about how blacks are treated by law en­force­ment of­fi­cers.

Af­ter the video went pub­lic, Slager was fired by the po­lice depart­ment and charged with mur­der. Scott’s fam­ily called for peace in the North Charleston com­mu­nity. Their calls for calm are be­lieved to have helped pre­vent the kind of vi­o­lence that erupted else­where when black men were killed in en­coun­ters with law en­force­ment.

It’s the sec­ond time in re­cent weeks a jury has dead­locked in an of­fi­cer-in­volved shoot­ing. A mis­trial was de­clared Nov. 12 when a jury in Cincin­nati couldn’t reach a ver­dict in the case of a for­mer cam­pus po­lice of­fi­cer who was also charged with shoot­ing a black mo­torist.

There have been sim­i­lar de­bates over race and polic­ing in places from New York to Fer­gu­son, Mo., and from Tulsa, Okla., to North Carolina.

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