The former North Charleston, S.C., police officer who killed a fleeing Walter Scott was indicted by a grand jury Monday on a murder charge, the New York Times reports.
Michael T. Slager, who was fired from the North Charleston Police Department after the April 4 shooting that rocked the nation after citizen video became public, has been held in jail on a murder charge for two months; his lawyers have made no move as of yet to request bail.
Despite the controversy and publicity around the shooting, the local prosecutor, Scarlett Wilson, said that it is possible a local jury could be enlisted: “I feel sure the people of Charleston County can decide this case.”
According to the Times, the prosecutor called the murder charge Slager is facing an “unlawful killing with malice aforethought.” Wilson said, “As long as malice is proven in the heart and mind, the state has proven its case.”
As the Times notes, there have been two formal complaints against Slager in the past, including one for excessive force involving the use of his Taser. The Times cited police records showing that the former cop had 19 use-of-force episodes during his time as an officer, including his fatal encounter with Scott. Of the 19 reports, 14 involved use of a Taser. Scott’s shooting death was the only time Slager reportedly fired his gun while on patrol, according to the Times.
Read more at the New York Times.