Expert: Scott Video Evidence Shows No Fair Warning

COLUMBIA, SC (WLTX)--- Colin Miller is the associate dean at the University of South Carolina's School of Law. He has been going over the dash cam and cell phone video of the shooting of Walter Scott.

On the dash cam, Scott can be seen running away from his car after being pulled over by Officer Michael Slager.

"This isn't a case of a crowded intersection. It's not a case of a suspect with a weapon. It's a small park at the end of a dirt road, a 50 year old man lumbering away, and there is no apparent warning before this officer shoots him in the back eight times," said Miller.

Based on what can be seen in the video. Miller says even though Scott is running away, it's tough to see how Slager had probable cause to shoot Scott.

"If we have a fleeing suspect, there are certain circumstances in which the officer can use force including lethal force against that fleeing suspect."

Miller basis his explanation off of a U.S. Supreme Court case, Tennessee vs Garner, which examines the use of deadly force by law enforcement to prevent the escape of what seems to be an unarmed person.

"First the officer has to have probable cause to believe that this suspect is a serious threat of bodily harm to the officer or either another member of the public. The second is if feasible the officer has to give some kind of warning before using lethal force. My point is that there might be thing before the video that possibly give that probable cause for the officer though, it is doubtful. More problematic for the officer is that there is no warning here," said Miller.

Miller says It's going to be hard for the defense to give an explanation about what occurred before the video to give Slager to use his weapon.

"The largest obstetrical the officer faces is his own words. he gave an accounting to what happened that does not appear to match the evidence, " said Miller

For more of Professor Millers take on the case.


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