Ohio patrolman acquitted in 2 deaths amid 137-shot barrage - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Ohio patrolman acquitted in 2 deaths amid 137-shot barrage

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CLEVELAND (AP) -- A Cleveland police officer has been acquitted in the shooting deaths of two unarmed people in a car following a high-speed chase.

Michael Brelo could have faced up to 22 years in prison had the judge convicted him on two counts of voluntary manslaughter.

Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Judge John P. O'Donnell said he could not determine whether Brelo alone fired the fatal shots. The judge spent nearly an hour summarizing his decision before declaring Brelo not guilty.

Thirteen officers fired at the suspects' car that night in a school parking lot. Yet only Brelo was charged criminally.

Prosecutors said he waited until the vehicle had stopped and the occupants were no longer a threat to step onto the hood and fire 15 rounds into the windshield.

The verdict follows a four-week bench trial on two counts of voluntary manslaughter in the deaths of Timothy Russell and Malissa Williams on Nov. 29, 2012.

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