Philando Castile (Photo Source: Facebook/Diamond Reynolds )

Nearly a year ago, Philando Castile was murdered by St. Anthony Minnesota Police officer Jeronimo Yanez during a traffic stop. Yanez stopped Castile because he claimed his wide-nose made him a possible suspect in a recent store robbery in the area.

Castile informed Yanez during the stop that he was legally carrying a handgun in his pocket when the officer asked him for identification. As Castile began to retrieve his identification, he told Yanez he was reaching for his ID and not his weapon. However, Yanez pulled his weapon and shot Castile four times in front of his girlfriend Diamond Reynolds and her young daughter. The aftermath of the encounter was live-streamed on Facebook and the last moments of a bleeding and gasping Castile were recorded for all the world to see, as the officer then tries to excuse his behavior and is heard cursing and yelling, “I told him not to reach for it!” The entire encounter lasted barely more than a minute.

Jeronimo Yanez (Photo Source: Ramsey County Jail)

Yanez was later charged with second-degree manslaughter and two counts of endangering safety by firing his gun near Castile’s girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, and her daughter. His trial starts this week and as usual for a cop killing an innocent Black man, he claimed that he was in fear for his life when he killed Castile. His attorneys also plan to introduce forensic evidence that Castile had traces of marijuana in his system and did not comply with Yanez’s orders because he was high.

The murder of Philando Castile was part of a long string of deadly police shootings that claimed the lives of Black men. In the vast majority of these incidents, officers claimed that they were in fear of their lives when they killed a suspect. Most recently, Tulsa Police Officer Betty Jo Shelby was acquitted in the killing of Terence Crutcher, an unarmed Black man, using the same excuse.

Mo Barnes

"Mo Betta" Maurice "Mo" Barnes is a graduate of Morehouse College and Political Scientist based in Atlanta. Mo is also a Blues musician.

  • Oak510finest

    I hope people don’t expect any favorable judgment from a white supremacist judicial system. They will always protect the military arm of white supremacy. I am confident however that black people will soon begin to exact a fitting revenge and begin to defend themselves against these white supremacist attacking them and race soldiers posing as cops!!

    I think very soon you will begin to see groups popping up across the country, similiar to the Black Panther Party for Self Defense during the 60’s. However, unlike the panthers these group will have no interest in fighting for equal protection under the law. They will have one goal and one motivation only. Which is an “eye for an eye”!

    If you take one of mines, I will take two of yours!! Very soon these murderous white supremacist and race soldiers posing as cops, will begin to understand what real fear is! The fear of an immediate consequence and judgement for their actions. They will soon understand that their outright lies and manipulation of the truth to justify waging their continued war against black people in America. Will no longer go unnoticed.

  • Oak510finest

    Also, how conceivable is it. For a cop to say he reached for a gun, after…

    1. Informing the officer he was armed legally.

    2. Had absolutely no criminal record or had not committed any crime when pulled over. Therefore had no fear of arrest or possible future incarceration. Which therefore shows no reason for deceased to pull a firearm.

    3. Initial reports shows the officer made no threats, either verbally or physically. Therefore the deceased had no reason to believe his life was in danger. Therefore needing to draw his firearm to protect family.

    Unfortunately, we all know this logic does not matter to a white supremacist judicial system. Nor does any facts or truth.

    Regardless of what eyewitness account of the incident may say. Regardless of how conflicting the officer’s story is with the actual facts of the case.

    The outcome we can assume. Is that the military arm of white supremacy will always be protected and rewarded for harming black people!!