Maryland police officer charged with murder for fatally shooting handcuffed man

In addition to public outrage, Prince George's County Police Chief tells the press, "There are no circumstances under which this outcome is acceptable"

Corporal Michael Owen Jr
[Prince Georges County]

A police officer in a Maryland suburb outside of Washington, D.C., is being charged with murder in the fatal shooting of a man who was handcuffed in the back seat of a patrol car.

Cpl. Michael Owen Jr. of the Prince George’s County Police Department allegedly shot suspect Michael Green, 43, seven times in Temple Hills, Md., on Monday night as Green sat in a police car, the BBC reported. Green, a father of two, was arrested after police responded to a call about a possibly intoxicated driver striking multiple cars.

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The events unfolded shortly after 7 p.m. Monday evening when police received the call. They approached Green, who was in a car, handcuffed him and placed him in the front seat of a patrol car while they summoned a drug recognition expert to the scene.

Owen, a 10-year veteran of the police agency, entered the car, sat next to Green and fired off seven shots a short time later, according to the news organization. Owen’s motive is still not known, the organization reported. The police agency is in the process of equipping all of its officers with body cameras and Owen did not yet have one.

Green was taken to a hospital, where he was later pronounced dead.

Police brass are condemning the alleged shooting.

“I have concluded that what happened last night is a crime,” the BBC reports Prince George’s County Police Chief Hank Stawinski told reporters.  “There are no circumstances under which this outcome is acceptable.”

Owen is charged with second-degree murder, voluntary and involuntary manslaughter, first-degree assault and use of a firearm in the commission of a violent crime, the BBC further reports.

It was not clear yet whether Owen has a lawyer.

The American Civil Liberties Union also condemned the incident.

“There is no reason why a handcuffed person should ever be shot multiple times by a police officer, let alone shot multiple times inside a patrol car,” Deborah Jeon, legal director of the ACLU of Maryland, said in a statement.

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A Twitter user who identifies herself as Green’s cousin expressed anger and sorrow at the shooting.

“They murdered my cousin,” posted the woman identified on Twitter as Liv, @liv_03. “How do you have someone in handcuffs and in a seat belt and shoot them multiple times. All cops aren’t bad but those were. I will fight with the last breath in me for justice. William Green was a family man, a working man. Funny. Loving. Love and miss you.