Trial opens against white officer who fatally shot black teen

March 19, 2019

Update March 22, 2019. A jury acquitted the white former police officer. The acquittal came after fewer than four hours of deliberations on the fourth day of the trial. Overnight, five to eight shots were fired into the building where defense attorney Patrick Thomassey works, police in nearby Monroeville said.

The Rose family’s attorney, S. Lee Merritt, had urged a murder conviction, saying before closing arguments that it’s “pretty obvious” Rose was not a threat to Rosfeld. But the former officer told a jury he thought Rose or another suspect had a gun, insisting he fired his weapon to protect himself and the community. A defense expert testified Rosfeld was within his rights to use deadly force to stop suspects he thought had been involved in a shooting.

Protesters Take To Street Following Michael Rosfeld Not Guilty Verdict.

The original post:

March 19, 2019. A white Pennsylvania police officer Michael Rosfeld, 30, who last year shot and killed Antwon Rose Jr.,17, a black teenager, goes on trial in a case that could put him behind bars for life. A jury of six men and six women, including three African-Americans, was selected in Harrisburg.

At the time of the shooting, Rose was unarmed because he only had a magazine on him without the gun. 13 minutes before the fatal shooting, Rose had been the front-seat rider in an unlicensed taxicab when the back-seat passenger rolled down a window and shot at two men. The shooter was Zaijuan Hester, 18, who pleaded guilty to aggravated assault and firearms violations for the incident that wounded a man in the abdomen. Hester told a judge he — and not Rose — did the shooting. A judge ruled that jurors will hear evidence of that incident, but it is likely they will not hear about a robbery that occurred several hours earlier.

The drive-by shooting led Rosfeld to pull over the unlicensed cab a short time later. While Rose ran from the vehicle, Rosfeld shot him three times, in the right side of his face, in his elbow and in his back. Two handguns were recovered from inside the vehicle.
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In June 2018, Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala Jr., addressed the charges filed against Rosfeld during a news conference, saying that the shooting of Antwon Rose II was not justified, “[Rosfeld] was not acting to prevent death or serious injury.”

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