The Latest: Police support murder charge against ex-trooper



Estimated read time: 1-2 minutes

This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

DETROIT (AP) — The Latest on charges against a former Michigan state trooper in the death of a 15-year-old Detroit boy (all times local):

12:50 p.m.

A spokesman for Michigan State Police says the department supports a second-degree murder charge against a former trooper who is blamed for a Detroit teen's death.

Lt. Mike Shaw says Mark Bessner violated policy by firing a Taser from a moving patrol car while trying to stop 15-year-old Damon Grimes in August because the teen was driving an all-terrain vehicle on a Detroit street. Grimes crashed the ATV after being hit by the Taser and subsequently died.

Shaw says a police officer's job is to protect citizens, "not take their lives."

Bessner was charged Wednesday with second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter. Prosecutor Kym Worthy says he "created a very high risk of death" when he fired the Taser.

Bessner quit the force after the boy's death.

___

11:15 a.m.

A former Michigan State Police trooper has been charged with second-degree murder in the death of a Detroit teenager who crashed an all-terrain vehicle after being shot with the officer's stun gun.

The Wayne County prosecutor planned to hold a news conference Wednesday. Court records show that besides second-degree murder, Mark Bessner is charged with involuntary manslaughter.

Fifteen-year-old Damon Grimes died from multiple injuries in the Aug. 26 crash. Bessner resigned as a state trooper shortly after the death.

Bessner's lawyer says he made a split-second decision to use a Taser when Damon refused to stop.

Since the teen's death, state police no longer conduct high-speed chases in Detroit unless they're investigating a major crime.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

The Associated Press

    SIGN UP FOR THE KSL.COM NEWSLETTER

    Catch up on the top news and features from KSL.com, sent weekly.
    By subscribing, you acknowledge and agree to KSL.com's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

    KSL Weather Forecast