Officer Jeronimo Yanez in Minnesota was acquitted of all charges related to his point-blank shooting of motorist Philando Castile, a young black man whose execution was streamed live by his girlfriend sitting beside him while her young daughter was in the back seat.
Now, after the trial, the police dashcam footage and the initial investigators’ interviews with Castile and his two police union lawyers have been released, revealing the shocking details that Yanez initially feared for his life—not because Castile was a self-identified lawfully-permitted concealed-carry gun owner—but because Yanez could smell marijuana coming from Castile’s car.
“As I get up to the car I’m hit with an odor of burning marijuana,” Yanez told Special Agents Doug Henning and Christopher Olsen of the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension. “And I know it’s already been smoked, and I’ve been around, uh, through my training, I’ve been around burnt marijuana and, uh, as a police officer, I’ve been around burnt marijuana and, uh, fresh marijuana. I smelled burnt marijuana. And then, I see a female child in the back. And then I see a front seat passenger, adult female, uh, in the front seat.”