The executive director of the SC chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union, Shaundra Scott, said her organization and others were working with police in the wake of the Scott case to ensure officer accountability.
Slager, a former member of the North Charleston Police Department, could have faced life in prison.
The death of Walter Scott in April 2015 was one of the most shocking in a series of high-profile United States police shootings, often involving minorities, that have deepened tensions and added to distrust between officers and the communities they serve. The appropriate offense was voluntary manslaughter, Slager's attorneys said. He faces up to life in prison when he is sentenced by a judge, perhaps as soon as this week.
He asked the judge to sentence Slager to the longest that the laws allow. "No matter what sentence I give, neither the Scott family nor the Slager family will think it is right".
A defense attorney says a white former SC law officer should be sentenced on the low end of guidelines being considered by a federal judge. "Michael, I forgive you, and Michael, I do pray for you now and for your family, because we've gone through a traumatic time", he said.
Judge Norton opened proceedings Thursday and said he believes it was second degree murder and that Slager committed obstruction of justice. However, Savage said his client believed that Scott could have been armed based on the fact that he fled from the traffic stop which was initiated by a broken brake light on Scott's auto.
Both sides wept in court today when Scott's mother looked the former officer in the eye and told him she forgave him.
The mother of a slain black motorist says she forgives the white former SC police officer who killed her son. What was supposed to be a routine traffic stop turned deadly.
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But in May, he pleaded guilty to one federal charge of depriving Scott of his civil rights by using excessive force while carrying out his duties.
One by one, relatives of the late Walter Scott urged a judge to mete out a significant punishment for Michael Slager, the white former police officer who fatally shot Scott, an unarmed black man, in the back after a 2015 traffic stop.
Scott's death in April 2015 became among the most high-profile police shootings in recent years due to graphic video that later emerged.
Judge Norton, according to Burr, said that no matter what sentence he hands down, the Scott family and Slager family won't like it. At issue was Slager's state of mind and the facts of the physical altercation that preceded the shooting-including whether Scott had handled Slager's Taser and what was said between the men.
Norton also said Slager obstructed justice when he made statements to state police after the shooting. Under questioning by Slager's attorney, Ghent said Monday the stun gun was never tested for fingerprints and that there was no reason for Slager to re-holster the weapon rather than leave it on the ground where it fell.
Slager's emotions stood in stark contrast to his stoic demeanor during his state murder trial when jurors deadlocked over a verdict.
Slager pleaded not guilty, and his attorney said at trial a year ago that his client feared for his life. Slager is then heard on a police radio reporting a description of Scott before yelling, "Taser, Taser, Taser!"