The Cleveland police officer, Michael Brelo, was acquitted of manslaughter on Saturday. Brelo climbed onto the hood of a car in 2012 and shot at the two people that were in the car, Timothy Russell and Malissa Williams. The two were unarmed when Brelo shot the two of them in their car.
According to The New York Times Brelo and other officers were in pursuit of Russell and Williams.
“The chase started downtown after reports of gunfire from the car; prosecutors said the noise apparently was the result of the car’s backfiring. More than 100 officers pursued the car for more than 20 miles at speeds that reached 100 miles an hour. They began firing when the car was stopped and cornered.”
Brelo climbed on top of the hood of the car and shot at the two in the car after the rest of the officers had stopped firing.
Judge John P. O’Donnell said that, “The state did not prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant, Michael Brelo, knowingly caused the deaths of Timothy Russell and Malissa Williams.” though Brelo shot lethal shots at Russell and Williams.
The cause of the chase was due to the police thinking that they heard gunfire coming from the car, but it was the car backfiring. Russell was driving a 1979 Chevrolet Malibu , knowing for doing so. There was no gun found in the car.
Though Brelo was acquitted that does not mean that the investigation is over. Federal officers will review the trail, testimonies, and evidence. They will also be looking to the actions of Brelo and the other officers that were involved with the chase.
Five supervisors might be charged with misdemeanors for not controlling the chase like they should have.