Ex-officer to plead guilty in fleeing black motorist’s death

In this image from video, Walter Scott struggles with police officer Michael Thomas Slager in Charleston, S.C., on April 4, 2015. Moments later, the video shows Slager firing eight shots at Scott's back. Scott's death was shown around the world and he became a symbol of the ongoing debate over police shootings of unarmed African-Americans. (Feidin Santana via AP Images)

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) – Former South Carolina police officer Michael Slager is pleading guilty to violating the civil rights of an unarmed black motorist he shot and killed as he ran from a 2015 traffic stop.

A copy of the plea agreement obtained by The Associated Press on Tuesday also shows state prosecutors are dropping a pending murder charge against Slager. The AP obtained the agreement from a lawyer familiar with the case who didn’t want to talk publicly before it was finalized.

Slager was scheduled to appear in federal court Tuesday for motions ahead of his federal trial planned for later this month in the death of Walter Scott.

A bystander captured Scott’s shooting on cellphone video, viewed millions of times.

Slager’s first trial on state murder charges ended in a hung jury.

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