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Ex-cop charged with murder in Calif. shooting

 This is Jan. 13, 2009 booking photo provided by the Douglas County Sheriff's Office of Johannes Mehserle taken in Minden, Nev. Mehserle, a former tra...

Train Station Shooting

This is Jan. 13, 2009 booking photo provided by the Douglas County Sheriff's Office of Johannes Mehserle taken in Minden, Nev. Mehserle, a former tra...

Prosecutors in the San Francisco Bay area have filed murder charges against a former transit officer in the shooting death of an unarmed black man.
Alameda County District Attorney Tom Orloff said the murder charge was filed against 27-year-old Johannes Mehserle (yo-HAN'-es MEZ'-ur-lee) because the evidence indicates "an unlawful killing done by an intentional act."
Witnesses say Mehserle fired into the back of 22-year-old Oscar Grant while the man was lying facedown on a train platform at a station in Oakland. Grant and others had been pulled off a train after reports of fighting, as New Year's Eve revelers were shuttling home after midnight.
THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) _ A white former transit police officer accused of killing an unarmed black man on an Oakland train platform has been arrested in Nevada on a warrant charging homicide, 12 days after the shooting that sparked violent street protests.
Johannes Mehserle, 27, waived extradition to California during a brief court appearance early Wednesday in Minden, Nev., and was being held without bail. Officials said he'll be returned to California no later than Friday.
Mehserle surrendered without incident Tuesday at a family friend's house in an upscale neighborhood of Douglas County on the east shore of Lake Tahoe, law enforcement officials said. Officers had advised his attorney, Christopher Miller, that an arrest warrant had been issued.
Alameda County District Attorney Tom Orloff was expected to announce details of the charges Wednesday afternoon.
Miller planned a news conference at his office in Sacramento.
Witnesses say Mehserle fired into the back of 22-year-old Oscar Grant while the man was lying face down on a station platform in Oakland. Grant and others had been pulled off a train after reports of fighting, as New Year's Eve revelers were shuttling home after midnight.
The shooting, captured on cell phone cameras and widely viewed on the Internet, has inflamed long-running tensions between law enforcement authorities and many African-American residents.
Hundreds of protesters have taken to the streets calling for the prosecution of Mehserle, with one rally last Wednesday spiraling into violence and resulting in more than 100 arrests and dozens of businesses damaged.
Another demonstration was planned Wednesday afternoon.
Douglas County, Nev., Undersheriff Paul Howell said he believes Mehserle went to Nevada for his own safety.
"He just wanted to get out of the Bay Area due to the magnitude of the incident," Howell said. "He wasn't trying to run."
John Burris, the attorney for Grant's family, said he talked to Grant's mother, Wanda Johnson, on Tuesday and said she was "happy and pleased that an arrest has occurred."
"However it does not bring her son back," Burris said.
Jack Bryson of Hayward, whose sons, Jackie, 21, and Nigel, 19, were with Grant when he was killed, said his sons and other friends with Grant that night were traumatized by the shooting.
Bryson said he was with his oldest son when they got word about Mehserle's arrest.
"Jackie said 'Dad they got (Mehserle)! They got him!'" said Bryson.
Mehserle had refused to talk to BART investigators before resigning last week.
"I want to know why he did it," said BART board member Carole Ward Allen. "We've heard from everybody else but him. While I can't speak for the entire BART board, we want to make this process as transparent as possible."
State Attorney General Jerry Brown assigned a prosecutor to monitor the case, and the U.S. Department of Justice sent mediators to help avert additional violent demonstrations.
Douglas County is 15 miles south of Carson City in northwestern Nevada and includes Lake Tahoe and Carson Valley.


Updated : 2021-05-12 01:50 GMT+08:00