Citizen Journalism Leads to Second-Degree Manslaughter Charge

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Citizen journalism and a live facebook stream led to second-degree manslaughter charge being handed out to Jeronimo Yanez, a St. Anthony police officer according to a CNN report. An incident between Philando Castile and the Minnesota police officer resulted in the officer fatally shooting the victim.
The shooting happened at a traffic stop for a broken tailgate per the victim’s girlfriend statement in the video in July 2016. Per CNN, the officer “was charged Wednesday with second-degree manslaughter and two felony counts of dangerous discharge of a firearm, Ramsey County Attorney John Choi said.” [1]
Founding attorney of criminal defense law firm 1.800.NoCuffs Darren Kavinoky says, “This is a case that may never have been filed were it not for ‘citizen journalists‘ armed with smartphones. That said, while there are always special challenges as a criminal defense lawyer representing law enforcement officers, those problems are amplified when the alleged crime (or, like in this case, the aftermath) is caught on tape.
Adds Kavinoky, “As a criminal defense attorney who has spoken to hundreds of jurors after criminal trials, I know first hand how powerful video evidence can be. The adage that a picture is worth a thousand words is never truer than inside a criminal courtroom.”
After reviewing this video evidence the Ramsey County Attorney John Choi did not find evidence that deadly force was warranted. You can watch the video here:


1. Ralph Ellis. CNN. November 16, 2016. “Officer charged with manslaughter in Philando Castile killing.” Retrieved via

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Criminal Defense attorney Darren Kavinoky is the founding attorney of 1.800.NoCuffs. If you need a DUI attorney in Los Angeles, you can see the team at The Kavinoky Law Firm here.