Philando Castile's Girlfriend Says Fear Led Her To Stream Police Shooting
Philando Castile‘s girlfriend recently testified that she streamed his final moments because she feared police officers would murder her too.
Diamond Reynolds testified at the trial of Jeronimo Yanez, the Minnesota police officer who killed Castile during a traffic stop for a broken taillight, on Tuesday. When asked why she shared the video, which was being live-streamed through Facebook at the time of the incident, Reynolds said she feared not only for her life but her daughter’s life since Yanez was still pointing his firearm into the vehicle after shooting Castile.
“I know that people are not protected against the police,” she reportedly said. “And I wanted everyone to see, that if I died in front of my daughter, everyone would know the truth.”
Aside from Reynolds’ testimony came an aggressive cross-examination from defense attorney Earl Gray. As the Star Tribune reports:
The defense has argued that Castile was culpably negligent in his own death because he smoked marijuana that day, was intoxicated and failed to follow Yanez’s directions…Reynolds’ interpretation of Castile’s arm movement before he was shot was also heavily scrutinized by the defense, which noted that she first said he was reaching for a wallet in his left rear pocket and then said in a May 31 interview with prosecutors that he was reaching to unbuckle the seat belt to his right. The defense maintains that Yanez saw Castile’s hand on a gun that was later found in his right front shorts pocket.
Yanez has been charged with second-degree manslaughter and two counts of dangerous discharge of a firearm.