The St. Anthony Police Officer who shot and killed Philando Castile during a traffic stop, is now facing charges of manslaughter.
According to published reports, Rasmey County Attorney John Choi has claimed that the use of force by Officer Jeronimo Yanez was not justified and that a review of dashcam footage revealed that “no reasonable officer” would have used deadly force.
“Philando Castile was not resisting or fleeing,” Choi said at a press conference. “He had no criminal intent; he was respectful and complaint; he volunteered in good faith that he had a firearm.”
John Choi, the Ramsey County attorney, said at a news conference in St. Paul, Minn., that Yanez, would also be charged with endangering the lives of Diamond Reynolds, Castile’s girlfriend, and her 4-year-old daughter, who was also in the car. These counts, along with the manslaughter charge, are all felonies.
“No reasonable officer knowing, seeing and hearing what Officer Yanez did at the time would have used deadly force under these circumstances,” Choi continued. “I have given Officer Yanez every benefit of the doubt on his use of deadly force, but I cannot allow the death of a motorist who was lawfully carrying a firearm under these facts and circumstances to go unaccounted for.”
Choi also added that Castile provided more information than was required by law.
Castile’s death in suburban Falcon Heights, Minn., drew particular attention because of Reynolds’s role calmly documenting what happened after he was shot.
“Stay with me,” she said at one point in the video, even as Castile continued bleeding in the front seat.
According to The Root, Choi did not release the dashcam video but said that in it, Castile turned over his driver’s license and proof of insurance “calmly,” while informing Yanez that he was also carrying a weapon. Yanez opened fire on Castile within a minute of stopping him.
Yanez was charged Wednesday with second-degree manslaughter and two felony counts of dangerous discharge of a firearm in the July 6 shooting death. If convicted, Yanez could face up to 10 years in prison.