Walter Scott was pulled over by Officer Michael Slager because a third brake light was out. There is no evidence provided he was pulled over due to his blackness.
Slager asks for the license, insurance and registration. There is no doubt Slager is aware of Scotts blackness at this point yet despite this fact he does not murder him in cold blood by shooting him.
Scott gives Slager a fishy, conflicting story about the ownership of the car he is driving. He provides no documentation other than apparently his driver’s license.
Slager goes to his cruiser.
00:00 Less than a minute goes by and Scott runs from vehicle. It is unknown why Scott ran and the passenger that was with Scott is unsurprisingly uncooperative in this regard.
00:03 Slager runs after Scott
00:16 Slager yells Taser Taser Taser
Notice again Slager did not reach for his sidearm and shoot Scott as he ran even though Slager can clearly see Scott is black.
Witness Gwen Nichols says the fight started at the path entrance
00:38 Slager yells for Scott to get on the ground
00:42 Slager yells for Scott to get on the ground
01:03 Slager yells for Scott to lie on the ground
Numerous times Scott is told to get on the ground and still Slager does not shoot him, Scott is still black at this point.
01:18 Slager tells the other unit to step it up
01:30 Slager and Scott are seen on video apx 100 yards from path entrance in an apparent struggle on the ground. Still Slager does not shoot Scott who is still black.
01:30 Apparent sounds of a taser
01:42 Slager is reaching for his sidearm with his right hand, his left hand is holding Scott’s right wrist, they are facing each other. 14 seconds later Slager is heard saying “he[Scott] grabbed my taser”. I believe it most likely that at this moment either both Scott and Slager were struggling over the taser or Scott had the taser in his right hand and Slager was attempting wrist control over Scott to point the taser away from him or disarm him. The taser is then seen bouncing on the ground away from the two behind Slager. This is the critical fraction of a second that already set in motion Slager reaching for his sidearm. I think it’s an absurd expectation to apply a standard that one ought to be able to suddenly freeze time in the heat of the moment of a fraction of a second and stop the already in action moment of pulling a weapon as the suspect is about to turn and run which cannot be known at that fraction of a second by the officer especially given the totality of the circumstances that immediately preceded it which constituted a protracted struggle lasting approximately 1 minute and 30 seconds. That is not murder. Slager did not set out to murder a black man. Slager had ample opportunity to kill this black man in the minutes before yet did not. Slager had many opportunities to kill black men in the years of his service yet did not.
01:43 Slager is pointing sidearm at Scott, Scott is in a sideways position relative to Slager
01:44 The first shot is fired as Scott runs
01:46:30 the final and eighth shot is heard
The cops immediately assess Scott’s injuries, provide aid and chest compression’s to Scott who is later declared dead at the scene.
With little investigation by SLED and Solicitor Scarlett A. Wilson, Michael Slager is fired, arrested and charged with murder three days later.
Slager will apparently have a grand jury and possibly a trial where the jury will decide if the prosecutor has met the burden of proof beyond all reasonable doubt.