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Former Virginia Officer Charged With Murder of Unarmed Man

August 18, 2015  | 

A former Fairfax County, Va., police officer was charged with second-degree murder Monday, nearly two years after he shot and killed an unarmed Springfield man who stood with his hands raised in the doorway of his home, reports the Washington Post.

The indictment of the officer in the killing of 46-year-old John Geer, who had a holstered gun at his feet when he was shot, marks the first time in the 75-year history of the Fairfax County Police Department that an officer has faced criminal prosecution in connection with an on-duty shooting.

Geer's death in August 2013 sparked protests, shook trust in law enforcement, and prompted county officials to begin a broad review of the department's use of force and the way it communicates with the public about police shootings.

A special grand jury in Fairfax County returned the indictment against the officer after hearing six days of testimony from nearly 20 witnesses, including a detective, Geer's family and other officers who responded to the scene. The officer did not testify.

Fairfax County police said the officer turned himself in on Monday evening and is being held without bond at the county jail.

After an internal investigation and appeal process, the officer was fired July 31, police said. He had been an officer since January 2006 but had been on administrative duty since August 2013.

Comments (4)

Displaying 1 - 4 of 4

Leonard Mather @ 8/18/2015 4:58 PM

With the succinct presentation of data, we can only hope for thoroughness and accuracy for this one. What type of holster was it? One that is accommodated by a belt? One that clips onto the waistband? How did it get onto the floor and from whence? I would lie to see more data to connect dots for the reason to shoot. Was the holstered weapon the type that could be fired when in one's hands? If so, that is vital! That could account for he perception of danger and the need to shoot, at which point, the holstered weapon would fall to the floor and appear as innocent as a newborn babe--misleading to be sure. The court transcript is needed on this one.

Jon Retired LEO @ 8/18/2015 7:50 PM

Don't know all of the facts on this case but it doesn't look good for the officer.

AJ @ 8/19/2015 6:32 AM

Watch your butts if you have been in an OIS that is still within the statute of limitations!!! Your DA may aspire to climb higher on the political ladder at the expense of you @$$...

kevCopAz @ 8/19/2015 8:04 AM

side note: even THIS publication states the Race of the "victim" only when they are Black and shot by a White Police Officer. Cant we either say the RACE ALL THE TIME or not at all unless proven to be a reason (which in my opinion NEVER happens). Really it aggravates many of us out here. In this case the man shot was NOT Black yet we have no idea of that or what Race he was. Perhaps if Race was used all the time with both officer and "shoo-tees" then many outside of Law Enforcement could get the real picture of how few times Blacks are shot by White Officers, and if they are for what reason. Many shooters are NOT White and many "shoo tees" are non Black, have some consistency will you please.

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