Supervisor told officer to be mum after shooting


Jury selection has begun in the first-degree manslaughter trial of a white Oklahoma police officer who fatally shot an unarmed black man past year.

A police supervisor said he stressed to Officer Betty Shelby on the night she fatally shot Terence Crutcher the importance of not speaking about the incident before consulting with legal counsel because he knew Crutcher's race would become a divisive issue. I knew there was going to be a group of people that didn't like what happened simply because of the color of somebody's skin, ' he testified.

Shelby's emotions in the video, which was taken three days after the September 16 shooting, have been used by both the prosecution and defense in the case. Video shows him walking away from her with his hands on his head... Three more officers approach him from behind, weapons drawn.

Sharolyn Wallace and Michelle Ogan, who teach at TCC's northwest campus, said they encountered Crutcher around 7 p.m. September 16, a Friday, after he had been wandering the halls in search of his class. Crutcher told them he enrolled in a fast-track music appreciation course, and Wallace invited him into her office to look up his schedule on her computer.

Shelby had encountered Crutcher's abandoned vehicle in the middle of the road in the 2300 block of 36th Street North in Tulsa. She faces four years to life in prison if convicted, the AP said. Campbell earlier told District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler he found some school books in Crutcher's vehicle, but no weapons. He also suggested Shelby received special treatment from police in preparing for her trial.

Two Tulsa police officers on the scene on that day testified they saw Crutcher attempt to reach into his vehicle through a driver's side window. Shelby's legal counsel also said she feared for her life and thought Crutcher was reaching into his vehicle for a gun. The alternates are one black man and one white woman. "It's not an expression of wanting to get help", she says, adding that his responses were unintelligible.

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Once they arrived back at the station, Montgomery said Shelby kept asking, "Why didn't he listen to my commands?"

Defense attorney Shannon McMurray called Shelby a model officer who followed her training that day.

Shelby also told police investigators that she believed Crutcher to be high on PCP, a powerful hallucinogenic that can make users combative and unpredictable.

Six other witnesses testified Wednesday, among them Officer Tyler Turnbough, who was on the scene and discharged his Taser the same time Shelby fired.

Crutcher (pictured) was 40 years old when he died.

"It was obvious there was something that transpired before I arrived", he said, noting that "the situation made me a little uneasy, a little edgy".