(NBC News) – After more than two years of vigorously defending his shooting and killing of unarmed motorist Walter Scott, former North Charleston police officer Michael Slager pleaded guilty in federal court Tuesday to violating Scott’s civil rights.
“Today he told the truth, he said he did it, and that’s our victory and the healing starts today,” Anthony Scott, Walter’s brother, said afterward.
The sudden shift was the result of a plea deal that ends both the federal and state cases against Slager.
“Today is a day of victory for Walter. We got justice,” Judy Scott, Walter’s mother, said.
Defense attorney Andrew Savage released a statement reading “We hope that Michael’s acceptance of responsibility will help the Scott family as they continue to grieve their loss.”
Slager shot and killed Scott in April of 2015 after Scott ran during a traffic stop.
Cellphone video showed Slager firing multiple times as Scott ran away from him.
As part of the plea deal two other federal charges will dropped, as will a state murder charge against Slager. His first trial on the murder charge ended in December with a hung jury.
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