Metro-East News

Judge reopens wrongful death suit in Stockley case over DNA withheld during case

Protesters sing together after not-guilty verdict for St. Louis police officer

Protesters in downtown St. Louis marched and sang on Friday after the acquittal of former St. Louis police officer Jason Stockley.
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Protesters in downtown St. Louis marched and sang on Friday after the acquittal of former St. Louis police officer Jason Stockley.

A federal judge has reopened the wrongful death case against a former St. Louis police officer after an attorney argued crucial DNA evidence was withheld.

Former St. Louis Police officer Jason Stockley shot and killed Anthony Lamar Smith in 2011. Weeks of protest broke out in St. Louis after judge found Stockley not guilty of murder in an August 2017 bench trial.

In a separate 2013 civil case, the Board of Police Commissioners settled a wrongful death suit with Smith's family for $900,000, according to KSDK.

KSDK reported on Wednesday that the family's attorney, Al Watkins, said that during the civil suit evidence showing Stockley's DNA on the gun involved was withheld from the Smith family's representation.

Stockley
Jason Stockley

Attorney General Josh Hawley conducted an independent investigation in December 2017. He ruled there had been wrongdoing in the case, according to KSDK. After that, KMOV reported that Watkins filed a motion to reopen the civil case.

Judge Hamilton will preside over a hearing in the civil case at the federal courthouse on April 3, KSDK reported.

While Smith was shot and killed on Dec. 20, 2011 it wasn't until Aug. 8, 2016 that Stockley was charged.

Dana Rieck: 618-239-2642, @ByDanaRieck
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