Judge: Ex-cop committed murder in shooting death of motorist in 2015

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) — Thursday morning a federal judge ruled Michael Slager committed murder in the second degree on the day he shot and killed Walter Scott.  The former North Charleston police officer killed Scott following a traffic stop turned chase two years ago.

The judge also ruled Slager obstructed justice in misleading investigators about what happened immediately following the shooting in April 2015.

Before handing down a formal sentence, the judge heard impact statements from Scott’s family.  Scott’s mother, Judy, turned and spoke directly to Michael Slager.  She asked Slager to accept Jesus and said she forgives him for the shooting.  During her statement, she locked eyes with Slager, who began crying.

“It was so surreal this happened that morning,” Judy said as she recounted listening to her son on the phone while he was running from Slager.

Scott’s father also addressed the court asking the judge to listen to God before ruling. Scott’s sister-in-law and brother also addressed the court. Wednesday Scott’s youngest son addressed court and asked the judge to give Slager the maximum sentence.

Scott’s brother Rodney told the judge he was sorry for Slager’s young son who would grow up without his father. He also said Scott’s children are without their father.

Speaking on Slager’s behalf, North Charleston PD investigator Charlie Benton addressed the court.  He told the judge Slager was known for being kind and gentle with victims of sexual assault.  He asked the judge to be just and merciful.

Tom Slager, Michael’s father, addressed the court.  He shared memories of Michael as a child always wanting to help others.

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