In October, the Alameda County, California District Attorney’s Office reopened 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. The family hoped to get justice for Grant’s death, and was pushing for the second officer who was involved in the shooting to be charged.
The white officer who killed Grant, 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, will not face charges.
According to a video statement, District Attorney Nancy O’Malley stated, “Although Pirone’s conduct was aggressive, utterly unprofessional and disgraceful, it did not rise to the mental state required for murder.”
She also added, Johannes Mehserle was the “sole and actual killer.”
According to NBC News, Lateefah Simon, a member of the BART Board Directors Lateefah Simon, slammed O'Malley’s decision, saying at a Tuesday (Jan. 12) news conference, "I want to be clear that Nancy O'Malley has failed, yet again, to do her job and that job was to ensure equal justice under the law."
The 2013 movie Fruitvale Station, starring Michael B. Jordan, was based on the final days of Oscar Grant’s life.
(Photos via Los Angeles County Superior Court & via The Law Offices of John Burris)