Sentencing starts for officer who shot, killed unarmed man

Michael Slager
FILE - In this Monday, Dec. 5, 2016, file photo, former South Carolina police officer Michael Slager, right, walks from the Charleston County Courthouse under the protection of the Charleston County Sheriff's Department after a mistrial was declared for his trial in Charleston, S.C. Slager is pleading guilty to violating the civil rights of an unarmed black motorist he shot and killed during a 2015 traffic stop. A copy of the plea agreement obtained by The Associated Press Tuesday, May 2, 2017, also shows state prosecutors are dropping a pending murder charge against Slager. (AP Photo/Mic Smith, File)

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — A former South Carolina police officer is returning to court to learn how long he’ll spend in federal prison for the shooting death of an unarmed black motorist following a traffic stop.

Sentencing starts Monday for Michael Slager. The former North Charleston police officer has been in jail since pleading guilty in May to violating Walter Scott’s civil rights.

Slager pulled Scott over for a traffic violation in April 2015. He said he shot Scott in self-defense when Scott tried to grab his Taser. But eyewitness video shows Scott was shot multiple times in the back as he fled.

Slager was tried on murder charges last year, but the jury deadlocked. The state dropped its case against Slager as part of his federal plea deal. Officials expect sentencing to last several days.

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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