The Alameda County, California District Attorney’s Office is reportedly reopening the investigation into the death of Oscar Grant, a 22-year-old who was shot and killed by BART police on New Year’s Day 2009.
Grant’s family is demanding a new look at the case in light of what they believe is new evidence that proves wrongdoing. The officer who killed him, Johannes Mehserle, was convicted of involuntary manslaughter and only served 11 months in prison. He was released on parole on June 13, 2011.
However, former officer Anthony Pirone, who was seen on video holding Grant down until he was shot, was never charged with a crime.
According to ABC7, a family member named Bobby Johnson said, “Oscar's last words were 'I can't breathe.’ Anthony Pirone, the BART officer who created the climate of violence pinned Oscar down with his knee on his neck, with his hands on his face."
Wanda Johnson, Grant’s mother, also said, "Justice delayed is justice denied. We will continue to be out here and remind people of how our judicial system is continuing to fail people of color."
Alameda County District Attorney Nancy O'Malley said in a written statement, “We are reopening our investigation. I have assigned a team of lawyers to look back into the circumstances that caused the death of Oscar Grant. Will evaluate the evidence and the law, including the applicable law at the time and the statute of limitations and make a determination."
The statement continued, "We have listened closely to the requests of the family of Oscar Grant. The murder of Oscar Grant greatly impacted the county and the state.”
The movie Fruitvale Station, starring Michael B. Jordan, was based on the final days of Oscar Grant’s life.