Home / National News / Michael Slager Murder Trial: Jury Breaks for Weekend Without Verdict

 

(NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C.) — Jury deliberations in the state murder trial of former North Charleston, South Carolina, police officer Michael Slager, who was arrested for the shooting death of an unarmed black man, will resume Monday.

The jury said they were deadlocked twice Friday afternoon, and after the second time, they requested additional explanation of the law in an attempt to reach a unanimous decision. Ultimately, the jury ended up breaking for the weekend without a verdict.

Earlier Friday afternoon, the jury sent three notes to the judge, indicating their divisions and that specifically there was a single holdout.

The holdup comes at the end of Slager’s high-profile state murder trial. Slager, who is white, was accused of killing Walter Scott, an unarmed black man, at a traffic stop on April 4, 2015, in North Charleston while Slager was an officer with the city’s police department. Witness video that surfaced shortly after the deadly encounter appears to show the moment Slager fatally shot Scott as he ran away. The video garnered national attention, propelling Slager into the spotlight.

Slager had pleaded not guilty to murder. But as the trial concluded this week, the jury was also allowed to consider a voluntary manslaughter charge, officials told ABC News. The voluntary manslaughter charge was requested by the prosecution and the judge allowed it based on testimony he heard during the trial.

“The court must let the jury decide if the force used was reasonable,” Judge Clifton Newman said. “That’s the essence of the case.”

Slager also faces a federal trial, which is scheduled for next year.

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