Tulsa police officer acquitted in death to return to duty


The foreman and others didn't identify themselves in the memo, requesting anonymity.

"Terence was not the aggressor; Betty Shelby was the aggressor", she said. The videos are partially obscured, but Crutcher appeared to reach into the auto, at which point one officer shocked him with a Taser. They told the jury that despite being afraid, Shelby was calm, giving clear concise commands, holding her gun steady, keeping good pacing with Terence Crutcher, and giving appropriate information over the radio.

"Could she have used a Taser? Yes".

The district attorney's office announced a verdict had been reached shortly after 9 p.m. local time (10 p.m. ET), more than eight hours after deliberations began, NBC affiliate KJRH reported. "We were thinking 'How long do we have to stay in here before they do a mistrial?"

Agreement did not come easy, the foreperson wrote.

A lawyer for Shelby, 43, said she believed Crutcher was under the influence of hallucinogenic drugs. Said Rhonda Washington, an African-American mother of two afraid to let her kids out of the house, "It's bad to have to live in captivity and fear". Police have not publicly discussed her future with the department.

Law enforcement officials say that while Shelby won't be serving in a patrol capacity, she will remain on the force. Tulsa police have said Crutcher was unarmed and there was no weapon in his vehicle.

On Sept. 16, Shelby and another officer responded to calls of a stalled SUV in the middle of the street. She said she "thought he [Crutcher] had a gun" because he repeatedly put his hands in and out of his pockets and reached inside of his auto window.

Crutcher's family says Shelby is "unfit" to serve and should be terminated. She initially said that the verdict was a tough pill to swallow, especially given the pertinent facts of the investigation. Shelby responded to the potential threat of a gun in the auto and wounded Crutcher, who later died at the hospital, NBC reported. A witness called 911 and said a man was running away from the vehicle, warning it was going to blow up. They noted Crutcher had his hands in the air, partly confirmed by video taken from a dashboard camera and helicopter.

Prosecutors said Crutcher did not make any aggressive moves. No weapons were discovered on Crutcher's person or inside the vehicle. In the minutes prior to the shooting, Shelby allegedly told the unarmed father of four to stop and lie down on the ground. Crutcher was shot by a Tulsa Police officer Friday night. She will be assigned a non-patrol position. The foreman of the jury also says in a three-page memo that jurors weren't comfortable with the idea that Shelby was "blameless" in Crutcher's death.

Closing arguments are scheduled for Wednesday in the manslaughter trial of a white Oklahoma police officer who fatally shot an unarmed black man a year ago.