Mehserle was shaken but said nothing (Oscar Grant shooting)

24May09

Johannes Mehserleoriginally published: 21st May 2009

Former BART police Officer Johannes Mehserle was distraught but silent after he shot an unarmed passenger to death early New Year’s Day, his partner testified Wednesday.

“When I looked at Officer Mehserle, his forehead was extremely sweaty, his face was flushed and his eyes were big,” Officer Jon Woffinden testified at Mehserle’s preliminary hearing on a murder charge. “He didn’t say anything. … I told him that he needed to take a walk.”

Woffinden’s testimony came at the end of a first day of appearances by defense witnesses in a hearing that has been dominated by video footage of the shooting. The defense hopes the officer’s account will bolster its argument that Mehserle meant to stun 22-year-old Oscar Grant with a Taser when he fired his pistol on the platform of Oakland’s Fruitvale Station.

Grant’s family members did not see it that way. Mehserle’s reaction, far from supporting the Taser defense, damages it, an attorney for the family said.

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