VIDEO: Total Acquittal of Cleveland Officer Brelo in Shooting Trial

This is a case in which two alcohol- and cocaine-riddled low-level dirtbags were reported to have fired a gun at police, then led 62–that’s SIXTY-TWO–Cleveland PD patrol cars on a night-time 22-mile, 100mph chase through urban Cleveland, until they were cornered in a middle-school parking lot.

At that point the miscreants–Timothy Russell and Malissa Williams–began smashing their 3,000lb 1980s Malibu into the responding patrol vehicles. Thirteen police officers opened fire, firing a total of 137 rounds in 20 or so seconds.

It is uncontested that 122 of those rounds and the first 12 seconds of firing were entirely lawful. The prosecution, however, decided that the last 15 rounds in the last 8 seconds fired by Officer Brelo justified two counts of voluntary manslaughter and two lesser-included charges of felonious assault.

Brelo opted for a bench trial, in which the judge–Judge John P. McConnell–would serve as the jury (a choice the prosecution sought to overrule to force Brelo before a black jury), and yesterday morning the Judge announced his verdict in excruciating detail, in an hour-plus of review of the evidence and law.

The verdict was not guilty on all counts. I took notes of the Judge’s painstaking rationale, and posted them over at Legal Insurrection (NOT GUILTY: Verdict in Prosecution of Cleveland Officer Brelo), but I also encourage folks to take the time to watch the following 35 minutes of video. Trust me, it’s a graduate class instruction in self-defense law. Granted, limited to the facts of this case, but nevertheless very informative.

And it’s free. Who doesn’t like free? 🙂

Here you go . . . enjoy!

About the Author

Andrew Branca
Andrew F. Branca is a Massachusetts lawyer and the author of the seminal book “The Law of Self Defense, 3rd Edition,” available at the Law of Self Defense website (autographed copies available) and (paperback and Kindle), and many other re-sellers. Andrew just launched his latest product, the LOSD Instructor Program, designed for gun safety, marksmanship and tactical strategy instructors. Be an elite member of the self defense community, understanding your state's self defense laws to a depth even lawyers rarely achieve. Check it out here.   Andrew also gives live, in-person, ~5 hour-long state-specific Law of Self Defense Seminars all over the country. Click here to find a live seminar covering your state's self-defense laws.   Andrew also produces many 4-5 hour online, on-demand state-specific Law of Self Defense training courses. These online classes are enriched versions of the live, in-person state-specific Law of Self Defense Class Andrew gives all around the country. Click here to find an online course for your state. These online classes are priced at $249/HOUSEHOLD. You can learn more details and view the first section of the training class for free (about 30 minutes worth of self-defense law training) by clicking here.

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