Cop Who Killed Man for Gun Presence Should Have Charges Dismissed: Reports

Dionne Cordell-Whitney | Courthouse News Service

ST. PAUL, Minn. (CN) – Attorneys for the Minnesota police officer who fatally shot Philando Castile during a traffic stop last summer tried to persuade a state judge Wednesday morning to dismiss the criminal charges against him.

Ramsey County District Court Judge William Leary III heard Jeronimo Yanez’s defense attorney, Paul Engh, argue why Yanez’s manslaughter and dangerous discharge of a firearm charges for the killing of Castile during a July 2016 traffic stop should be dismissed.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey Paulsen, representing the state of Minnesota, argued the case should continue to trial.

On Monday, Leary issued an order for courtroom attendees on how Wednesday’s hearing would be conducted. Some of the rules included no standing, no leaving the courtroom without permission, and no clothing or signs referring to Castile. One of the strictest requirements was that no one was allowed to make any facial expression or change in demeanor that expressed their opinion in response to arguments being made.

The hearing lasted about 40 minutes and most of the attendees were reporters and Castile’s family.

Yanez, 28, entered the courtroom in a beige suit with a black tie, appearing to have a somber expression on his face.

Engh argued that the case lacks probable cause and that Yanez acted within his rights as a police officer during the stop.


Yanez suspected Castile of being involved in a robbery that occurred four days before the shooting. The officer said he had reason to stop Castile because his vehicle had a broken taillight.

“Yanez had the right to investigate, to have a gun, to have [Castile] obey his commands, to reach into [the car] and prevent Castile from getting the gun and to shoot,” Engh states.

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Filming Cops
Filming Cops 3206 posts

Filming Cops was started in 2010 as a conglomerative blogging service documenting police abuse. The aim isn’t to demonize the natural concept of security provision as such, but to highlight specific cases of State-monopolized police brutality that are otherwise ignored by traditional media outlets.

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