Jake Gardner, an Omaha, Nebraska bar owner who shot and killed 22-year-old James Scurlock during the height of the George Floyd protests, has been indicted on multiple counts, the New York Times reports.
According to the report, Gardner was indicted by a grand jury for manslaughter, use of a firearm in the commission of a felony, attempted first-degree assault, and making terrorist threats.
The news breaks after Douglas County Attorney Don Kleine originally declined to bring charges against Gardner, claiming that the bar owner fired during a scuffle when he was pushed down amid the protests. Scurlock allegedly jumped on Gardner and “maintained a chokehold” as Gardner demanded that the young man get off of him. The altercation ended in Gardner killing Scurlock.
About a week later, Kleine released another statement, noting that after listening to local residents and officials he would support calling a grand jury to review the case.
Frederick D. Franklin was selected as a special prosecutor in the case, and acknowledged on Tuesday that he expected to come to the same conclusion as Kleine, but that only changed as evidence continued to be gathered in the case.
“There was evidence that was gathered and presented to the grand jury about activity that Jake Gardner was engaged in prior to even coming in contact with James Scurlock,” he said according to KETV. “Evidence to reasonably be construed as an intent to use a firearm for purposes of killing someone. You will want to know what it is, and I can’t tell you about it. But what I can tell you is that that evidence comes primarily from Jake Gardner himself.”
The grand jury, Fraklin said, was “able to understand that Jake Gardner was threatening the use of deadly force in the absence of being threatened with a concomitant deadly force by James Scurlock or anyone who was associated with him,” the Times reports.
Omaha police reportedly spoke with 60 people and went through several videos throughout the investigation.
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