In Minnesota, protesters took to the streets Sunday for a third straight day after a St. Anthony police officer was acquitted Friday in the killing of a black motorist he shot five times during a traffic stop last year. Officer Jeronimo Yanez was acquitted on charges of manslaughter for killing African American Philando Castile. The jury of seven men and five women, 10 of whom were white and two who were African-American, deliberated for more than 25 hours over five days before acquitting Yanez on all charges. This is Philando Castile’s sister Allysza, speaking just after Friday’s verdict.
Allysza Castile: “And I’m really just so hurt, because y’all took away—he took away something so precious from me. That was my brother, that was my mentor, that was my father figure, that was everything. That man worked hard every single day, every birthday, every Christmas. He was the one that made sure I had gifts. He didn’t deserve to die the way he did. And I will never have faith in this system. I will never have faith in this system.”
Philando Castile’s death was live-streamed on Facebook by his girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, in an extraordinary video in which she narrated the aftermath of the shooting while she was still in the car, with Officer Yanez pointing a gun at her and her 4-year-old daughter. On Friday evening, about 2,000 demonstrators gathered outside Minnesota’s state Capitol in St. Paul to demand police accountability. Several protesters blocked a main interstate between St. Paul and Minneapolis, resulting in 18 arrests. Peaceful demonstrations continued throughout the weekend. For more on the killing, we’ll go to the Twin Cities after headlines.