File photo Photograph:( Reuters )
Edsaul Mendoza was charged with first-degree murder, third-degree murder, voluntary manslaughter and possession of an instrument of crime with intent to use it criminally.
A former Philadelphia police officer has been charged with first-degree murder after he fatally shot a 12-year-old boy back in March this year. District Attorney Larry Krasner said on Monday that the boy was unarmed and, on the ground, but the police offer still shot him which resulted in the boy’s death.
According to the judgement, the 12-year-old Thomas “TJ” Siderio and a 17-year-old identified as “NK” came across four officers in an unmarked police car. It is likely that “TJ” was the first person to fire a bullet towards the car and that resulted in officer Edsaul Mendoza chasing the two youngsters.
After a foot chase, Mendoza caught up with TJ and although he threw away his gun, the officer went ahead of shot him three times. Immediately afterward, Mendoza directed another officer to the spot where the boy had thrown the gun, which was found 40 feet away, the DA said according to CNN.
"Thus, when Officer Mendoza fired the third and fatal shot, he knew the 12-year-old, 5-foot tall, 111-pound Thomas Siderio no longer had a gun and no ability to harm him," Krasner said.
According to the CNN report, Mendoza was charged with first-degree murder, third-degree murder, voluntary manslaughter and possession of an instrument of crime with intent to use it criminally.
Mendoza was relieved from his duties around two months after the incident as Police Commissioner Danielle M. Outlaw found him in violation of the use of force policy followed by the department.
(With inputs from agencies)