To prosecutors, the trial of former BART police Officer Johannes Mehserle proved that he "abandoned all judgment and training and became part of a sweeping swell of officer aggression" when he killed unarmed train rider Oscar Grant.
To defense attorneys, jurors learned that Mehserle accidentally shot Grant while intending to subdue the 22-year-old with a Taser during a difficult arrest, making "a tragic and irreversible error while trying in good faith to do his job."
The interpretations were laid out Tuesday in legal briefs filed with Judge Robert Perry, who is scheduled to sentence Mehserle on Nov. 5 in Los Angeles County Superior Court.
Prosecutors are making a case for prison time for Mehserle, 28, who was convicted of involuntary manslaughter in July and has been jailed in Los Angeles ever since. The defense seeks his release on probation.