UPDATE 6:20 a.m. (8/24/21): Lawyers for two U.S. Park Police officers told a judge that local prosecutors are not entitled to second-guess the split-second judgments officers made when they fatally shot an unarmed motorist after a stop-and-go chase in northern Virginia.
The officers sought to persuade a judge Monday in federal court in Alexandria that their clients have immunity from manslaughter charges brought against them in Fairfax County in the 2017 shooting death of Bijan Ghaisar.
Federal prosecutors declined to bring criminal charges. A Fairfax County prosecutor then obtained indictments for involuntary manslaughter.
Local and state prosecutors say the officers can’t claim immunity when their conduct was unreasonable.
ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) — Lawyers for two U.S. Park Police officers are hoping to persuade a federal judge their clients have immunity from local prosecutors’ efforts to charge them with manslaughter in the shooting death of an unarmed motorist in 2017.
A hearing is scheduled Monday in U.S. District Court in Alexandria in the case against officers Lucas Vinyard and Alejandro Amaya.
The two shot and killed 25-year-old Bijan Ghaisar of McLean after a stop-and-go chase outside the nation’s capital. Federal prosecutors declined to bring criminal charges.
A Fairfax County prosecutor then obtained indictments against the pair for involuntary manslaughter, but lawyers for Vinyard and Amaya say their status as federal officers gives them immunity from local prosecution.
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