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Shooting of Walter Scott

The shooting of Walter Scott occurred on April 4, 2015, in North Charleston, South Carolina, following a daytime traffic stop for a non-functioning brake light. Scott, an unarmed black man, was fatally shot by Michael Slager, a white North Charleston police officer. The race difference led many to believe that the shooting was racially motivated, generating a widespread controversy.[1] Slager was charged with murder after a video surfaced which showed him shooting Scott from behind while Scott was fleeing, and which contradicted his police report.

The case was independently investigated by the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED). The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Office of the U.S. Attorney for the District of South Carolina, and the Justice Departments Civil Rights Division are conducting their own investigations.

In June 2015, a South Carolina grand jury indicted Slager on a charge of murder. He was released on bond in January 2016. In late 2016, a five-week trial ended in a mistrial due to a hung jury.

In May 2016, Slager was indicted on federal charges including violation of Scotts civil rights and obstruction of justice.

On May 2, 2017, in a plea agreement, Slager pled guilty to federal charges of civil rights violations.[2] [3] In return for his guilty plea, murder charges from the state will be dropped.[2] [3] The guilty plea carries a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.[4]

Walter Lamar Scott[note 1] (February 9, 1965 – April 4, 2015),[6] a 50-year-old black man, was a forklift operator, studying massage therapy.[7] [8] [9] Scott previously served two years in the U.S. Coast Guard before being given a general discharge in 1986 for a drug-related incident.[10]

Michael Thomas Slager (born November 14, 1981),[11] 33 years old at the time of the incident, served in the North Charleston Police Department (NCPD) for five years and five months prior to the shooting. Before becoming a police officer, he served in the U.S. Coast Guard.[12]

Slager was named in a police complaint in

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