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Judge will allow officer’s joke about shooting at trial

Associated Press

Norfolk, Va. — A jury in Virginia will be allowed to hear testimony that a police officer joked about shooting to death a mentally ill black man.

The Virginian-Pilot reports that a judge is allowing the testimony at the officer’s upcoming trial on manslaughter charges.

Norfolk officer Michael Edington Jr. is charged with shooting and killing 35-year-old David Latham in 2014. Latham suffered from schizophrenia and had a knife when he answered the door to his home. Court documents allege that Edington joked about the shooting a month later at a party with fellow officers.

Edington’s lawyers tried to block the information from coming out at trial, saying it was immaterial to the case.

A police department spokeswoman says that Edington still works for the Norfolk Police Department at a desk job.