Charges Dropped Against White Police Officer Who Killed Unarmed Black Teen
The charges against a former Arkansas police officer who gunned down a 15-year-old boy in August of 2012 using the defense that he thought the teen was attempting to run into him with his vehicle have now been dropped and the family of the young man who lost his life is now left still searching for justice.
via Arkansas Online
A judge has dropped charges against a former Little Rock police officer whose manslaughter trial in the fatal shooting of a teenager while on duty in 2012 twice resulted in deadlocked juries.
Josh Hastings returned to court Monday morning for a hearing before a third trial that had been scheduled to begin next month.
But at the proceeding before Pulaski County Circuit Judge Wendell Griffen, prosecutors requested dropping the charges instead of going to trial.
Chief Deputy Prosecuting Attorney John Johnson noted the facts were largely undisputed but that the two mistrials brought to light that “this is a unique case where there can be no unanimity of the jury.”
“We believe that he should have been found guilty,” Johnson said while acknowledging he now believes getting that verdict would be impossible. “Not just difficult. We have no good-faith basis we would ever get a jury to unanimously convict.”
The dismissal does allow the charges to be refiled, though Hastings’ defense attorney said afterward that it’s hard to imagine that would occur.
Johnson noted the family of 15-year-old Bobby Moore, whom Hastings fatally shot, objected to the decision to dismiss charges.
Deazzaray Perkins, Moore’s older sister, blasted prosecutors for dropping the charges “when they know this man was in the wrong.”
“He killed a 15-year-old child,” she said in an impassioned statement to reporters by the front steps of the courthouse. “They think we’re supposed to be OK with it? I’m not … That was my baby brother. It’s been three years.
Hastings on Aug. 12, 2012, shot Moore while investigating a report of vehicle break-ins at the Shadow Lake apartment complex in Little Rock.
Hastings says he opened fire while Moore drove a vehicle toward him, but prosecutors in the first two trials contended that the vehicle was not moving toward Hastings and that he acted recklessly in opening fire.
Hastings was fired from the force after police investigated the shooting. His attorney, Bill James, said Hastings will seek to get his job back.
This shooting took place only 6 months after acquitted child-murderer George Zimmerman gunned down unarmed teen Trayvon Martin and sadly, both cases have seen the same outcome. What will it take for these men and other like them to be held accountable for their reckless actions???