Thursday, September 28, 2023
Courthouse News Service
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Solicitor Seeks New Date |for S.C. Cop Murder Trial

(CN) - South Carolina Ninth Circuit Solicitor Scarlett Wilson asked a judge to reschedule the murder trial of the former North Charleston police officer who shot and killed an unarmed black motorist who ran from a routine traffic stop last year.

The trial of Michael Slager, who is white, is currently scheduled to begin on Oct. 31. In a motion filed late Wednesday in Charleston County Circuit Court, Wilson asked that the trial either be pushed up, and held in August, or else postponed until May 2017.

Slager is charged with murder in the death of Walter Scott, an incident that became notorious after a video emerged showing Scott beinf shot in the back as he ran from Slager during a traffic stop in April 2015. Slager has said what the video doesn't show is a struggle between the two men in which Scott momentarily had control of the officer's Taser.

Moving the trial to August would mean it would proceed the trial of Dylann Roof, who is accused of killing 9 black parishioners during a Bible study at the Emanuel AME Church in downtown Charleston last June.

Roof's trial was supposed to start this July but has been moved to January.

Moving Slager's trial to May 2017 would give prosecutors time to try him after Roof.

On Thursday morning, Slager's attorney, Andy Savage told Courthouse News that he and his legal team will be filing a motion in response to the solicitor's motion shortly.

"It is not unusual for one side or the other to ask for a status hearing and we endorse her request. Our position regarding a trial date and the reasons therefore will be included in our reply," Savage said.

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