Family of man killed by ex-Milwaukee cop files suit

On Monday, the jury was told it could find Officer Heaggan-Brown guilty of the original charge, first-degree reckless homicide, or of either of two lesser charges: second-degree reckless homicide, which carries a maximum of 15 years in prison, or homicide by negligent operation of a unsafe weapon, punishable by as many as five years in prison.

The two engaged in a foot chase after Smith fled from a traffic stop on August 13. Heaggan-Brown fired a another shot less than two seconds later while Smith was on the ground, striking him in the chest and killing him.

Dominique Heaggan-Brown listens to the statement he made to investigators after the shooting is read back to him in court by Special Agent Raymond Gibbs of the Wisconsin Department of Justice, Friday, June 16, 2017, in Milwaukee. Heaggan-Brown and Smith were both black, and four of the 12 jurors were black. An official from Milwaukee County's medical examiner's office said that the second shot traveled through Mr. Smith's heart and lung and was "not survivable".

The shooting death of Smith sparked two nights of riots in the predominantly black Sherman Park neighborhood.

Heaggan-Brown has since been fired from Milwaukee PD in an unrelated sexual assault case. According to CNN, Willis "wrote the use of force manual used by Milwaukee police officers". But Heaggan-Brown's attorneys played bodycam video to show the two shots he fired came just 1.69 seconds apart - illustrating how little time the officer had to decide.

Heaggan-Brown faces up to 60 years in prison if convicted.

Heaggan-Brown was sacked two months later after he was charged in an unrelated sexual assault.

"He knew that Sylville Smith was attempting to surrender", Chisholm said. Jurors are also being given the option to choose from two lesser charges instead — second-degree reckless homicide and homicide by negligent operation of a unsafe weapon. However, defense attorneys charged that the officer was only trying to defend himself. At that moment, Heaggan-Brown fired at him, hitting his right arm.

News of Dominique Heaggan-Brown's acquittal has sparked plenty of reactions on Twitter.

Data shows 82 officers nationwide have been charged with murder or manslaughter for on-duty fatal shootings since 2005, said Philip Stinson, a criminologist at Ohio's Bowling Green State University.

Heaggan-Brown had previously said he believed Smith "was reaching for his waist so he discharged his weapon a second time". Smith, who was armed with a handgun, ran away from the officers when he saw them exit their squad auto. According to Fox6, jurors also had the option to pick from two lesser charges instead of first-degree reckless homicide.

Reason reported on the shooting when Heaggan-Brown was charged in December.

But Heaggan-Brown's attorneys say he feared for his safety and had to make a split-second decision.

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