The officer involved in the shooting of Philando Castile has been acquitted of all charges, leaving the victim’s family enraged.
The Associated Press reports the jury came to the decision on Friday (June 16) after nearly a week of deliberation. Jeronimo Yanez opened fire on Castile July 6, 2016 after pulling Castile over for a traffic stop. His girlfriend Diamond Reynolds who was also in the vehicle with their child, recorded the aftermath of the shooting on Facebook Live, bringing national attention to the shooting.
During the trial, Yanez argued that he fired into the car because he thought Castile was going for his registered gun. Reynolds claimed the father made the officer aware of his gun while retrieving his wallet. After the verdict was read, Castile’s family wept and left the courtroom.
“The system continues to fail black people, and it will continue to fail you all,” his mother Valarie Castile said to reporters.“My son loved this city and this city killed my son. And the murderer gets away. Are you kidding me right now?”
Yanez might be a free man, but he won’t return to active duty status. “The city intends to offer Officer Yanez a voluntary separation agreement to help him transition to another career other than being a St. Anthony officer,” the city said in a statement, per the Washington Post. “The terms of this agreement will be negotiated in the near future, so details are not available at this time. In the meantime, Officer Yanez will not return to active duty.”