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Former transit officer goes on trial for fatal shooting of unarmed man

Former transit officer goes on trial for fatal shooting of unarmed man
CNN Wire Staff, CNN, June 2, 2010

Los Angeles, California (CNN) — Jury selection begins Wednesday in the case of former Bay Area Rapid Transit police officer Johannes Mehserle who is accused of fatally shooting an unarmed man on a California train platform on New Year’s Day last year.

Mehserle, who is white, has pleaded not guilty to killing Oscar Grant III, a 22-year-old black man.

The shooting was captured on a bystander’s cell-phone video camera, widely circulated on the Internet and on news shows, and spurred several protests and riots in and around Oakland.

The trial has been moved from Alameda County to Los Angeles due to pre-trial publicity.

Bay Area Rapid Transit police were called to Oakland’s Fruitvale station January 1, 2009, after passengers complained about fights on a train. Officers pulled several men, including Grant, off the train when it arrived at Fruitvale. (Read the full article)