The charges come amid heightened scrutiny of police use of
excessive force after killings of numerous unarmed black people
triggered protests across the United States over the past two years.
Jason Stockley, 35, was arrested on Monday at his home in Houston,
Texas by St. Louis police and the U.S. Marshals, St. Louis Circuit
Attorney's Office spokeswoman Susan Ryan said.
Stockley, who is white, shot into Anthony Lamar Smith's car on Dec.
11, 2011, sparking a high speed chase. Stockley was a passenger in a
police SUV that chased the 24-year-old Smith at speeds reaching 80
miles per hour, a statement from the prosecutor's office said.
Stockley's vehicle crashed, and when they began pursuit again,
Stockley can be heard saying on an internal police car video, "going
to kill this motherfucker, don't you know it," prosecutors said.
Smith's car began slowing to a stop when Stockley directed his
partner to smash into Smith's vehicle. Stockley then gets out of his
car, walks toward the driver's side of Smith's vehicle and shoots
him five times, the statement said.
"We believe we have the evidence we need to prove Mr. Stockley's
guilt beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law," St. Louis
Circuit Attorney Jennifer Joyce said in a statement.
Stockley could not immediately be reached for comment.
[to top of second column]
Police told the local St. Louis Post Dispatch newspaper at the time
that a weapon was recovered from Smith's vehicle after the killing.
The prosecutor's office said the only gun recovered from the scene
had only Stockley's DNA on it.
Prosecutors at the time did not criminally charge Stockley, who left
the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department in 2013, the statement
said. Additional evidence uncovered by a police department and FBI
investigation was provided to prosecutors in March and led to
Monday's charges, the statement said.
The St. Louis Post Dispatch reported that Smith's family filed a
federal wrongful death lawsuit against the city over the killing,
which settled in 2013 for $900,000, the largest such settlement from
a police shooting in the city's history.
(Reporting by Curtis Skinner in San Francisco; Editing by Andrew
[© 2016 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2016 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.