The Daily Grind Video

Manslaughter charges against the Detroit police officer who fatally shot a sleeping 7-year-old child have been dismissed.

Officer Joseph Weekley has been on trial for involuntary manslaughter in the death of Aiyana Stanley-Jones, but charges were dropped on Friday when Wayne County Circuit Court Judge Cynthia Gray Hathaway granted a motion filed by Weekley’s attorney. An emergency appeal was presented, but the court denied the appeal on Monday.

Presiding Judge Michael Talbot issued the order, saying that the appeals court was not able to review the decision because the trial court had granted the defense’s motion to drop the manslaughter charge orally and in a written order before there was an appellate review.

“Although I find that the trial court erred in form and substance in granting defendant’s motion for directed verdict, we are barred from reviewing that decision,” Talbot wrote.

The prosecution has filed an emergency motion for reconsideration with the appeals court.

Roland Lawrence, chairman of the Justice for Aiyana Committee, issued a statement Monday following the court’s decision.

“Surely, the death of a baby by a well-trained police force must be deemed unacceptable in a civilized society,” Lawrence said.

Aiyana was killed while sleeping on a couch during a police raid on her home in 2010. The team was conducting a search of a murder suspect for the A&E television show, The First 48. Weekley fired the shot after another office threw a flash-bang grenade.

Weekley maintains that Aiyana’s grandmother, Mertilla Jones, struck his gun, causing him to fire. Jones was sleeping on the couch with her granddaughter when Weekley shot his submachine gun. She testified she did not touch the gun.

The prosecution sought to show that Weekley was acting improperly and in violation of training by keeping his finger on the trigger of his submachine gun.

“He could have avoided injury if he had followed his training,” Assistant Wayne County Prosecutor Robert Moran said in court Friday. “He didn’t, and as a result of him not following his training and not following the mandates of ordinary care, someone was killed.”

Weekley’s lawyer, however, tells a different story.

Steve Fishman, Weekley’s attorney, said in court Friday that the prosecution had not presented evidence that could lead a jury to find his client guilty of involuntary manslaughter.

“There is absolutely no evidence, none, that’s in the least bit credible, that Officer Weekley knowingly created a danger or, more importantly, intended to cause injury,” Fishman said.

This is Weekley’s second time standing trial. He was tried for involuntary manslaughter last year, but a hung jury caused a mistrial.

SOURCE: Huffington Post | PHOTO CREDIT: Handout

THEY HAVE A NAME: Honoring Those We Lost To Senseless Violence (PHOTOS)
Global Grind Logo G
0 photos

Global Grind

Quick Links