Philando Castile death: Police footage released

  • Published
Media caption,

Police dashcam has been released of the Philando Castile shooting

A video showing the fatal shooting of a black Minnesota motorist by a police officer has been released days after the officer was acquitted.

Jeronimo Yanez shot Philando Castile during a traffic stop in Falcon Heights last July, and the aftermath was live-streamed on Facebook by his girlfriend.

The shocking 10-minute video shows a calm, polite encounter between the two men that escalated quickly.

Mr Yanez says he feared for his life and Mr Castile did not follow orders.

The 29-year-old police officer was found not guilty on charges of second-degree manslaughter and two felony counts of intentional discharge of a dangerous weapon for endangering the safety of Mr Castile's girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, and her four-year-old daughter, who were both in the car at the time.

He has since been fired from the police force.

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"You shot four bullets into him, sir" - Philando Castile's girlfriend, Lavish Reynolds, live-streamed the aftermath of the shooting

The case - one of a series of deaths of black men and boys at the hands of US police - has prompted widespread outrage.

The dashcam footage from Mr Yanez's patrol car, released by Ramsey County on Tuesday night, appeared to show a routine traffic stop.

Mr Yanez was seen approaching Mr Castile's white sedan while another officer stood near the passenger's side.

Image source, Reuters
Image caption,
Jeronimo Yanez was found not guilty
Image source, Facebook
Image caption,
Philando Castile was a school cafeteria supervisor

He told Mr Castile he pulled him over because a brake light was out before he asked for his driver's licence and insurance.

Mr Castile handed him a piece of paper and said: "Sir, I have to tell you, I do have a firearm on me."

"OK. Don't reach for it, then," Mr Yanez is heard saying while appearing to reach for his own weapon. "Don't pull it out."

Media caption,

Philando Castile's mother Valerie and sister Allysza condemned the verdict

Mr Yanez again repeated "don't pull it out" in a loud voice as he drew his own gun and fired inside the car multiple times.

The officer ordered Ms Reynolds, who is heard screaming, not to move and began shouting expletives.

After the shooting, the second officer escorted Ms Reynolds' daughter from the backseat of the vehicle.

Media caption,

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Ms Reynolds is heard explaining that her boyfriend was reaching for his ID, to which Mr Yanez replied: "I told him not to reach for it."

The officer called for emergency responders and later is heard saying: "I don't know where the gun was."

The footage appeared to corroborate Ms Reynolds' account of the incident. which she filmed immediately following the shooting.

Image source, Getty Images
Image caption,
Protesters gathered outside the Minnesota state capitol in St Paul

But the video, played for the jury during Mr Yanez's trial, did not show what was happening inside the car and what Mr Castile was reaching for just before he was shot.

A jury cleared Mr Yanez on Friday, sparking protests in the city of St Paul.