Betty Jo Shelby, the white Tulsa, Oklahoma police officer who fatally shot an unarmed black man named Terence Crutcher, has been found not guilty of first-degree manslaughter. It took the juror nine hours to come up with a verdict.
After the verdict was announced, there was a crowd of people outside to protest the decision.Crutcher’s father, Rev. Joey Crutcher, said after the verdict was announced: “Let it be known that I believe in my heart that Betty Shelby got away with murder.”
Crutcher’s twin sister, Tiffany Crutcher, also spoke out against the verdict, saying: “Terence was not the aggressor; Betty Shelby was the aggressor.”
The Oklahoma governor, republican Mary Fallin, released a statement after the decision was announced.
Asking Oklahomans to respect our criminal justice system and to remain calm after tonight’s Betty Shelby verdict. https://t.co/4tSt3pj20M
— Governor Mary Fallin (@GovMaryFallin) May 18, 2017
In September 2016, Shelby was one of many officers who responded to reports of an SUV that was left abandoned in the middle of a road. The SUV belonged to Crutcher. As Crutcher walked up to his vehicle, with his hands up, police officers were yelling commands at him, which he did not follow. One officer fired a taser at him and Shelby fired shots.
Later on, Shelby would say that she has never been “so scared” in her life.
The shooting became a national story after the dashboard footage was released and showed that Crutcher was not a threat. Also, overheard in the video was one of the officers saying Crutcher, who was a father of four, was “a bad dude.”
As of a couple of hours ago, there were protesters in the streets of Tulsa.
— ABC News (@ABC) May 18, 2017