*Alameda County District Attorney Nancy O’Malley announced Monday that a team of lawyers will re-examine the Oscar Grant case after his family called for new charges.
Grant’s fatal shooting by a BART transit officer in 2009 was among the first to be captured on a cellphone video and shared on social media.
His killing “greatly impacted the county and the state,” O’Malley said, noting Grant’s family’s request to revisit the case, NBC News reports.
“I have assigned a team of lawyers to look back into the circumstances that caused the death of Oscar Grant,” she said. “We will evaluate the evidence and the law, including the applicable law at the time and the statute of limitations, and make a determination.”
Grant’s family is requesting a reexamining of the killing “in the wake of renewed international attention to the murders of Black men, women, children, and most notably the recent torturous killing of George Floyd.”
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Prosecutors reopened the case of #OscarGrant, a 22yo Black man fatally shot in the back by a Bay Area transit officer while pinned on the ground in 2009.
He served 11 mos for involuntary manslaughter. Family want the other officer, who held a knee on Grant’s neck, also charged. pic.twitter.com/3kZriDT2lQ
— AJ+ (@ajplus) October 6, 2020
“We have listened closely to the requests of the family of Oscar Grant,” O’Malley’s statement read. “The murder of Oscar Grant greatly impacted the county and the state. My Office conducted the intensive investigation that led to the prosecution of BART Officer Johannes Mehserle for the crime of Murder. The trial occurred in Los Angeles due to a change of venue ordered by the court on the motion of the defense.
“Unfortunately, the Los Angeles jury only found Officer Mehserle guilty of Involuntary Manslaughter,” the statement continued. “We are re-opening our investigation. I have assigned a team of lawyers to look back into the circumstances that caused the death of Oscar Grant. We will evaluate the evidence and the law, including the applicable law at the time and the statute of limitations and make a determination.”
A 2009 report on the case noted that the officer who knelt on Grant’s back and pinned him to the ground, “started a cascade of events that ultimately led to the shooting of Grant.”
The report argued “(o)fficer Pirone’s overly aggressive and unreasonable actions and conduct in violation of policy and acceptable standards contributed substantially to the escalation of the hostile and volatile atmosphere during the course of the incident.”
BREAKING: Alameda County DA O’Malley reopens investigation of BART officers in fatal shooting of Oscar Grant
What u need to know about the case: https://t.co/p8sKpFi3tB
Key photo below of Ex-Officer Anthony Pirone, who was not charged, w/ knee on Grant before Mehserle fired pic.twitter.com/JTOByvPa9X
— Demian Bulwa (@demianbulwa) October 5, 2020
Grant, a 22-year-old Black man, was shot on a train platform in Oakland on Jan. 1, 2009. The white transit officer who killed him, Johannes Mehserle, was ultimately convicted him of involuntary manslaughter, and released from prison after 11 months.
BART settled a wrongful death claim with Grant’s daughter and mother for $2.8 million in 2011.
“We’re not holding our breath, but we definitely will be praying that she sees the truth in this issue,” said Bobby Johnson, Oscar Grant’s uncle, after O’Malley’s announcement.