TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — An appeals court in Ohio has overturned the felonious assault conviction of a former police officer who shot an unarmed motorcyclist during a traffic stop, paralyzing him from the waist down.
The 6th Ohio District Court of Appeals in Toledo ruled Friday that former Ottawa Hills police officer Thomas White must get a new trial.
He had been sentenced to 10 years in prison in the 2009 shooting. He has been free pending appeal.
The appeals court says the jury was improperly instructed on the use of force. The court also says a gun specification was improperly applied, and the ex-officer cannot face that charge in any retrial.
White testified that he fired because he believed the man was reaching for a weapon, but prosecutors call it excessive force.