Feds won't charge Baton Rouge officers

  • Feds won't charge Baton Rouge officers

Feds won't charge Baton Rouge officers

The decision comes after the Department of Justice announced that federal authorities would not be seeking charges against officers Blane Salamoni and Howie Lake involved in the controversial shooting last summer in Baton Rouge.

"The high burden meant federal prosecutors would have not only had to prove the use of force was "objectively unreasonable" but also ". that the officers acted in a willful manner with specific intent to deprive this individual of their constitutional rights", he said. The other officer assists in restraining Sterling. A detective wrote in the search warrant affidavit that officers had observed the butt of a gun in Sterling's front trousers pocket. A focal point of the investigation hinged on whether Sterling had threatened the officers with a gun or if the officers perceived a threat that led them to fire six bullets into his body. The U.S. Justice Department has decided not to charge two.

Some said they feared tensions would increase in the coming days.

In order to prosecute the case, the government would have to prove not only that Sterling was not reaching for his gun, but also that Salamoni did not actually believe Sterling was reaching for his gun after being warned not to move, the agency said.

Salamoni's lawyer said the officer was relieved he won't face federal charges.

"We are unable to establish beyond a reasonable doubt the precise location of Mr".

US Attorney Corey Amundson told a press conference that after a thorough 10-month review, that there was "insufficient evidence" to press charges. Still, he said, "experts criticized aspects of the officers' technique". And a white suburban Dallas officer was sacked after fatally shooting a 15-year-old boy as the auto he was riding in was driving away.

The July 5 deadly police shooting of Sterling is now the focus of a state investigation, Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry announced Wednesday.

Landry said his investigation "could take a considerable amount of time". Afterward, the two groups had press conferences at the same time, prosecutors saying that there was not enough evidence to bring federal charges against the officers and the family and its representatives saying that they are encouraged that there is enough evidence to bring a successful state prosecution.

Officials from the Department of Justice's Civil Rights Division and the New Orleans field office for the Federal Bureau of Investigation joined in Wednesday's announcement, which had been the subject of rumors that had left Baton Rouge on edge for more than a week.

Former LSU running back Leonard Fournette, who was the fourth overall pick in last weekend's NFL Draft, tweeted a picture of himself wearing a Sterling shirt previous year.

But DOJ officials will meet with the Sterling family at about 11:30 a.m. (12:30 p.m. ET) Wednesday, family spokesman Arthur Reed said. The officers involved - Salamoni and Lake - are on paid administrative leave and will remain that way at least through the conclusion of the state attorney general's probe, McKneely said.

"What we saw on the news was nothing compared to what you all are going to see". The announcement confirmed rumors that were reported by multiple sources on Tuesday, which prompted public response even before the official decision had been issued.

Police in Baton Rouge, the Lousiana capital, said on Wednesday they had arrested three women at a late-night protest on a city highway near police headquarters.

A spokesman for Gov. John Bel Edwards said he was unaware of any decision.

But Landry has made clear he thinks the state police should review the material first, before he is brought in to make a final decision about state charges against the officers. The Office of the Diocese of Baton Rouge released a statement from Bishop Robert W. Muench appealing to people of all faiths to "seize this opportunity to bring about healing and change".

The U.S. Department of Justice issued a statement nearly simultaneous to Landry's Wednesday announcing that it had decided not to prosecute the officers involved in Sterling's death.

Although the videos show that Sterling's right hand was not in or near his right pocket, he continued to move after being shot, despite Lake's commands not to, the Justice Department said. While he's pinned down, a voice is heard yelling: "He's got a gun! Gun!" before gunshots are heard.

Sterling's fatal shooting came amid a spate of race-tinged violence involving law enforcement. Castile, who was 32 and black, was pulled over by an officer outside St. Paul and shot after informing the officer he had a weapon, which he was licensed to carry, in the vehicle.

The officer, Jeronimo Yanez, who is Latino, was charged with second-degree manslaughter and unsafe discharge of a firearm.

It comes a day after the white Charleston police officer who shot Walter Scott dead accepted a plea deal which could see him jailed for life. Officers responding to the shooting killed Johnson. Salamoni's father, Noel Salamoni, is a Baton Rouge police captain.