ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — St. Paul’s city attorney says she’s dropping charges against 18 people who protested the fatal shooting of black motorist Philando Castile in 2016.
Several had been scheduled for trial in mid-August. But City Attorney Lyndsey Olson says she determined moving forward wasn’t in the city’s best interest.
“We reviewed these cases with fairness and adherence to the applicable laws,” City Attorney Lyndsey Olson said. “In light of the evidence, we have determined that further pursuit of these charges is not in our city’s best interest.”
The 18 were among 73 arrested outside Gov. Mark Dayton’s official residence in July 2016 after law enforcement moved to break up a protest that had lasted nearly three weeks. Most of the 73 pleaded guilty to minor charges, but seven went to trial earlier.
Castile was shot July 6, 2016, after he told an officer he had a gun permit and was armed. The officer was acquitted.
Olson’s announcement came just days after Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said he wouldn’t charge two Minneapolis police officers in the fatal shooting of a black man in June.
(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)