Castile Family Says Justice System 'Failed' with Not Guilty Verdict

June 16, 2017 07:48 PM

The Castile family delivered an impassioned statement outside the courthouse Friday, saying they were extremely disappointed with the jury's not guilty verdict, expressing disappointment in the justice system.

The jury found Jeronimo Yanez on not guilty all charges in a manslaughter trial in the shooting death of Philando Castile. The verdict came Friday after 29 hours of deliberation. 


Valerie Castile, Philando's mother, yelled an expletive as she left the courtroom, according to reporters inside the courtroom. 

Minutes later, she spoke outside of the courthouse saying, "I am so disappointed in the state of Minnesota. ... The city killed my son, and a murderer gets away. Are you kidding me?!"

She continued, "I am mad as hell right now. ... Just because he was a police officer that makes it OK?"

Castile's 24-year-old sister then approached the podium and said, "The system is wrong, and it has really failed us."

Valerie Castile then returned to the podium added that Yanez will get justice in the end. 

"Yanez may have gotten away with justice on this planet of existence. He will not get away with divine justice. He has to answer to someone bigger than all of us," she said. "He's just here. We're just going through this human experience, and he will have to face his creator, and I hope he'll die tonight."

A spokesperson for the family has asked for the family's privacy to be respected. 

Castile's girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, issued the following statement: 

I am incredibly disappointed with the jury's verdict. My boyfriend, Philando Castile, was pulled over because, per Officer Yanez, he had a wide nose and looked like a suspect. He did nothing but comply with Officer YANEZ's insturctions to get his driver's license. He was seatbelted and doing as he was told, when he was shot by Officer YANEZ who fired 7 shots into the vehicle where my 4 y/o daughter and I also sat. It is a sad state of affairs when this type of criminal conduct is condoned simply because Yanez is a policeman. God help America.

St. Paul Public Schools released a statement after the jury was returned saying the verdict "may bring strong emotions for those who knew and cared for Philando Castile." The district said counselors will be available to speak with staff and students as needed.

"The Saint Paul Public Schools community continues to remember and mourn the loss of "Mr. Phil" a beloved SPPS employee," the statement said.

Gov. Mark Dayton issued the following statement: 

I extend again my deepest condolences to Philando Castile's family, to his friends, and to his community. Minnesotans continue to grieve with them, for their horrible loss. Mr. Castile's death was a terrible tragedy, with devastating consequences for everyone involved. I will continue to do all I can to help our state heal. 

There are thousands of law enforcement officers, who courageously risk their lives to protect our communities, and many other dedicated Minnesotans, who are working to correct the injustices in our state. I believe that, working together, we can make the changes necessary to secure both safety and justice, in all of our communities, for all Minnesotans.


Theresa Malloy

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