The fatal New Year’s Day shooting was one of the first incidents of police brutality caught on video, and a pivotal moment in Bay Area history. Footage showing a transit police officer firing on Grant’s back as he protested against police accountability across the country. The case gained international recognition in Ryan Coogler’s 2014 film Fruitvale Station, which was named after Grant’s death.
A Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) officer who shot Grant in the back, Johannes Messerle, was convicted of involuntary intentions in a rare criminal trial over murder by law enforcement. He was sentenced to two years in prison and released in 2011.
Cephas “Uncle Bobby” X Johnson, Oscar Grant’s uncle, said, “It sounds good, but we’re not holding our breath.” “We have been doing this for many years and we have seen the system break many hearts.”
The Alameda County District Attorney’s Office originally accused Messerle of murder, but after a jury in Los Angeles – where the trial went, Mehser’s lawyers asked for a change of venue due to publicity of the case in Oakland – Mehserle guilty of lesser charge.
While Meserel cannot be tried again for the same crime, prosecutors may see the role of other officers in the role played in Grant’s murder. Grant’s family and community activists have called for a re-investigation into the case.
“I urge you to take a decision quickly. Grant’s mother, Rev. Wanda Johnson, said during a Monday press conference in front of the train station, “We should not wait for 11 years.”
“If our judicial system does not respect their word, we will remain here and remind the world how our judicial system is failing people of color,” Johnson said.
“We have heard the requests of Oscar Grant’s family closely,” Alameda County District Attorney Nancy O’Malley said in a statement on Monday. He said, ‘I have assigned a team of lawyers to look into the causes of Oscar Grant’s death. We will evaluate evidence and the law, including timely applicable law and statute of limitations, and a determination. ”
A report released last year under a new California Police Transparency Law reveals that another transit officer lied to investigators repeatedly that night and punched Grant without any explanation. Reportedly, BART officer, Anthony Piron, “triggered a cascade of incidents that led to the shooting”, including calling Grant the N-word and hitting him in the face.
The report also casts doubt on Meserel’s argument that he meant to pull his tusser, not his gun, noting that the “enhanced video” suggested that Mesirel “intended to pull his gun.” Was, not his tussar “.
Johnson says that since Mehselle’s sentence, her family has been waiting for the DA’s office to take charge of Piron. And after the 2019 report, with the outcome of George Floyd’s death, the family decided “it was time”.
Johnson said, “If we did not pay attention to what happened to the Oscars in 2009, George Floyd and Bryo Taylor would not have been killed.” “Now this reopening is a new flashpoint that will travel across this country.”
An attorney for Grant’s family, Edante Pointer, said that while he was happy that the district attorney was reopening the investigation, he questioned why it took him more than a decade – and the community and national protests surrounding the police killings Calling from demonstrations – taking action. While murder charges have no time limit, such assaults, assaults with a deadly weapon, or battery all have lesser limitations, including those that are most likely to be the case.
“Is this political theater or is it serious criminal prosecution that is being considered?” He asked. “Any good lawyer would know that many of the charges that could have been easily brought are now scorched by the sands of time. By the time the community demanded action, she once again sat on her hands. “