The trial of Jeronimo Yanez, the officer who killed Philando Castile, was a miscarriage of justice that reflects America’s appeasement of police crimes, holds Daniel Payne of The Federalist. This echoes a wider trend of officers unnecessarily ending black men’s lives only to be deemed innocent. The U.S. appears unable to see Yanez’s incompetence in shooting Castile, who was calmly cooperating with all of his requests. Police officers seem to be above the law, no matter how bad their crime is. Yanez killing Castile merited at the very least a second-degree manslaughter charge. The lack thereof leaves Castile’s family without the justice they deserve.
Even though Philando Castile’s death is highly regrettable, the verdict deeming officer Jeronimo Yanez innocent was in accordance with the law, reports Shaun King of NY Daily News. The widespread condemnation of the trial is rooted in emotions, not in legal facts. This may represent America’s flawed legal system, but if an officer can prove that they felt threatened, shooting an individual is within the law. Yanez’s claim that he felt threatened is believable, based on the information available to him. Philando’s death may have been an unnecessary tragedy, but criticism for it should be directed at the law, not the police and not Yanez.