A former Minneapolis police officer who fatally shot an unarmed woman in 2017 was sentenced to 57 months in prison on a lesser charge Thursday after his murder conviction was overturned earlier this year. Mohamed Noor was initially convicted of third-degree murder and manslaughter in the 2017 fatal shooting of Justine Ruszczyk Damond, a 40-year-old dual U.S.-Australian citizen and yoga teacher who was engaged to be married.
Last month, the Minnesota Supreme Court tossed out Noor's murder conviction and 12 1/2-year sentence, saying the third-degree murder statute doesn't fit the case. The justices said the charge can only apply when a defendant shows a "generalized indifference to human life," not when the conduct is directed at a particular person, as it was with Damond.
Damond called 911 to report a possible rape happening behind her home. Noor testified at his 2019 trial that he and his partner were driving slowly in an alley when a loud bang on his police SUV made him fear for their lives. He said he saw a woman appear at the partner's driver's side window and raise her right arm before he fired a shot from the passenger seat to stop what he thought was a threat.