National News

Stockley takes stand in murder trial; says he carried AK-47 because he valued life

Posted August 8

— Former St. Louis Police Officer Jason Stockley took the stand Tuesday.

Stockley, who is facing a murder charge in the 2011 death of Anthony Lamar Smith, took the stand in his own defense before 11 a.m. and was the second witness of the day.

When asked why he was carrying his personal AK-47, which is against department policy to have, Stockley told the court he valued his life and other people's lives over the department policy that states personal weapons cannot be carried.

Stockley also testified that he saw a gun in Smith's car. He also said Smith's hand was on the gun. The former officer stated he felt like his life was at risk and other lives were at risk of serious injury or death.

The witness that took the stand prior to Stockley stated he saw the officer become startled before firing a shot.

Last week, an FBI expert testified that one of the bullets fired at Smith was from less than 6 inches away. Prosecutors have been arguing that Stockley intended to kill Smith and that he planted a gun.

Stockley is still on the stand. We will update this story as testimony continues Tuesday.

Copyright 2017 KMOV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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