Minnesota Officer Charged with Manslaughter for Fatally Shooting Philando Castile
The Minnesota officer— Anthony Jeronimo Yanez— who fatally shot and killed Philando Castile in July, has been charged with second-degree manslaughter and two felony counts of dangerous discharge of a firearm, Ramsey County Attorney John Choi announced Wednesday, The Washington Post reports.
The killing sparked a wave of protests across the nation after it was livestreamed on Facebook by Castile's girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, who was also in the vehicle during the shooting, along with her four year-old daughter, who was in the backseat. Castile's shooting came just one day after Alton Sterling was shot and killed by Baton Rouge police outside of a convenience store. His death was also captured on video.
According to the Washington Post, John Choi, the Ramsey County attorney, said at a news conference in St. Paul, Minn., on Wednesday morning that Jeronimo Yanez, the officer who shot Castile, would also be charged with endangering the lives of Reynolds and her 4-year-old daughter, who was also in the car. Choi said that Yanez’s use of deadly force was unjustified because Castile “never removed or tried to remove” the gun he had in his pocket, which was registered and legal.
Castile and Sterling's deaths sparked a flurry of protests and involvement in the push to end state sanctioned police violence against black people. Even celebrities who never were vocal on social issues previously issued statements-- including Michael Jordan. Kim Kardashian and Beyoncé also offered statements condemning police violence. Killer Mike intensified his push to move dollars to black-owned banks following the incident as well.
Yanez and his partner, Officer Joseph Kauser, were both put on leave from the St. Anthony Police Department after the shooting. Kauser will not face any charges.