Jury deliberates on verdict for OKC officer charged with murder of unarmed suicidal man

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OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) - Jury deliberations have been going on since 2 p.m. on Monday in the trial for the Oklahoma City Police Sergeant charged with second-degree murder after shooting and killing an unarmed suicidal man in 2017.

The state and defense presented impassioned pleas to the jury for their closing arguments as family members from both sides watched in the packed courtroom.

The state says Keith  Sweeney rushed into the situation, didn't follow training, and killed Dustin Pigeon- who was asking for help- after being at the scene for only 12 seconds.

The district attorney says Officers Howell and Nitzky responded reasonably, and the fact that Howell never drew his gun shows there was no threat.

Defense attorney Gary James says Sweeney reacted the way he was supposed to react and that police officers don't have time to evaluate things with 20/20 hindsight when things move so quickly.

He argues Sweeney wouldn't have fired if he knew what Pigeon was holding wasn't a knife and acted reasonably based on his perception.

If convicted, Sweeney faces a maximum sentence of life in prison.


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