Former South Carolina police officer Michael Slager was sentenced Thursday to 20 years in prison for the deadly shooting of Walter Scott, reports ABC News.

U.S. District Judge David Norton ruled that Slager committed second-degree murder and obstruction of justice when he shot and killed 50-year-old Scott in 2015. The second-degree murder ruling came with a recommended 19- to 24-year sentence.

Slager's father, mother, sister, and wife spoke to the judge, begging for a lighter sentence. They talked about how Slager led a life of service and how upset they were after the shooting. Michael Slager's wife, Jamie Slager, told the judge, "He had to make a decision in a split second. I couldn't imagine having to make a decision that fast."

The judge's decision comes after Michael Slager pleaded guilty to a federal civil rights offense.

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