Former Cop Who Shot and Killed Walter Scott Now Faces Federal Charges

Michael Slager was filmed shooting and killing the South Carolina man in the back.

Feidin Santana/AP


The former police officer who was filmed fatally shooting Walter Scott, an unarmed black man in South Carolina last year, has been indicted by a federal grand jury on three new charges. The federal indictment, which was filed on Tuesday, accuses Michael Slager of violating Scott’s civil rights, obstruction of justice, and the unlawful use of a weapon, the New York Times reports.

Last April, a bystander recorded Slager fatally shooting Scott in the back as he attempted to flee a routine traffic stop, directly challenging Slager’s initial claim that Scott had stolen his police taser and tried to use it against him. The new charges this week accuse Slager of purposely misleading authorities.

According to a statement released by the Department of Justice, if convicted, Slager could face a maximum sentence of life in prison for the civil rights violation.

Slager is already facing a possible sentence of 30 years to life for the shooting death, after a South Carolina jury indicted him on murder charges last June.

THE BIG QUESTION...

as we head into 2020 is whether politics and media will be a billionaires’ game, or a playing field where the rest of us have a shot. That's what Mother Jones CEO Monika Bauerlein tackles in her annual December column—"Billionaires Are Not the Answer"—about the state of journalism and our plans for the year ahead.

We can't afford to let independent reporting depend on the goodwill of the superrich: Please help Mother Jones build an alternative to oligarchy that is funded by and answerable to its readers. Please join us with a tax-deductible, year-end donation so we can keep going after the big stories without fear, favor, or false equivalency.

THE BIG QUESTION...

as we head into 2020 is whether politics and media will be a billionaires’ game, or a playing field where the rest of us have a shot.

Please read our annual column about the state of journalism and Mother Jones' plans for the year ahead, and help us build an alternative to oligarchy by supporting our people-powered journalism with a year-end gift today.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

We have a new comment system! We are now using Coral, from Vox Media, for comments on all new articles. We'd love your feedback.