3rd day of ex-officer Michael Slager's sentencing wraps up

3rd day of ex-officer Michael Slager's sentencing wraps up

I miss watching football with him.

"I miss my father every day", Miles Scott said through tears.

He asked the judge to sentence Slager to the longest that the laws allow.

Slager's state trial ended when a panel of 11 white jurors and one black juror deadlocked past year after deliberations over four days.

But he indicated he will sentence the 36-year-old Slager to a minimum of 235 months, or almost 20 years, in prison.

U.S. District Judge David Norton could hand down the sentence this week. Slager's attorneys think the videos show him acting in a calm, professional demeanor leading up to the fatal shooting of Walter Scott.

Norton could announce Slager's punishment on Thursday, the fourth day of a sentencing hearing on a charge of violating the civil rights of Scott, whose fatal shooting on April 4, 2015, brought global attention to North Charleston. Attorneys on both sides were expected to summon more witnesses to testify about the impact Scott's death and Slager's arrest have had on both families. The state murder charge was dropped as part of Slager's federal plea deal.

Slager first pulled Scott over for a broken taillight.

Feidin Santana - the man whose cell phone recording captured Slager firing eight times, striking Scott five times in the back - had a different take, saying he was in shock after what he saw that day.

A 3-D expert testified for the defense that the taser could've landed behind Slager because Scott threw it there, or it fell and bounced behind him. In his closing argument, defense attorney Andy Savage acknowledged the shooting was criminal but reiterated the stance that his client was protecting himself and feared for his own safety. Slager chased him for 200 yards and, then, the two men scuffled. He said he shot the 50-year-old black motorist in self-defense after Scott tried to grab his Taser.


Slager's attorneys argued on Wednesday that his essential crime was not murder but voluntary manslaughter, which carries a lesser sentence.

"He was not in a frenzy", Fishman said.

Morgan said he doesn't have any evidence of Slager lying but does have evidence of a memory change.

The day began with a cross-examination of defense witness and forensic psychiatrist Dr. Charles Morgan.

Fishman said Scott's killing was a murder, and said there was no good reason as to why Slager moved the taser next to Scott's body following the shooting. Slager testified during his state trial that he shot Scott in self-defense because he felt threatened when the man grabbed his stun gun.

At this week's hearing, attorneys for Slager and the state called expert witnesses to the stand to bolster rival interpretations of the video and audio, which included some dash-cam footage from Slager's auto. He said it was "time to call it what it was - a murder", second-degree murder, specifically. He broke down the cell phone video frame by frame and explained that he could see that there was a fight between Scott and Slager, when they were on the ground. Scott's mother, Judy Scott, said through tears that her faith in God gives her the ability to forgive Slager.

Savage has claimed that state and federal prosecutors teamed up to go after Slager together.

Federal authorities allege Slager obstructed justice by misleading officials about his encounter with Scott, including moving the stun gun from where it had fallen prior to the shooting.

At one point, Judge Norton told Savage that they were not going to rehash the entire Slager investigation, and that if Savage had a point to make to go ahead and do it.

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