Ex-Kansas City police officer sentenced to 6 years in 2019 killing of Cameron Lamb

Eric DeValkenaere was convicted in Nov. 2021 of fatally shooting a Black man outside his Kansas City home

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The ex-police detective convicted of fatally shooting a Black man outside his Kansas City, Missouri home in 2019 has been sentenced to six years in prison after he was convicted of involuntary manslaughter and armed criminal action.

As reported by CNN on Saturday, former Kansas City Police detective Eric DeValkenaere was sentenced by 16th Judicial Circuit Court judge James Dale Youngs to three years for involuntary manslaughter and six years for armed criminal action. Both sentences are to be served concurrently.

DeValkenaere, who is white, was convicted in November 2021 after prosecutors said he shot and killed Cameron Lamb, a 26-year-old mechanic and father of three, while he was backing his pickup truck into the basement garage in his backyard on Dec. 3, 2019.

Former Kansas City police detective Eric DeValkenaere listens to witness statements during his sentencing hearing Friday, March 4, 2022 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Jill Toyoshiba/The Kansas City Star via AP)

DeValkenaere remains free on bond pending appeal of the conviction, according to KSHB-TV.

It is unprecedented in Kansas City for a law enforcement officer to be convicted for the fatal shooting of a Black man, per KCUR-FM.

DeValkenaere shot Lamb after he and another detective arrived at the residence in response to a nearby high-speed chase involving a red pickup truck that authorities tracked to Lamb’s residence via police helicopter, per the indictment.

Warrantless and dressed in plainclothes, DeValkenaere and his partner, with guns drawn, approached the back of the house where Lamb was “slowly backing” the red truck into the garage, CNN reported, citing the indictment.

According to the outlet, DeValkenaere shot at Lamb four times, testifying during trial that he saw Lamb reach for a gun with his left hand. DeValkenaere’s partner conversely told the court that Lamb’s left hand was placed on the steering wheel and was holding no gun, per the report.

CNN reported that investigators later found a gun underneath Lamb’s left hand, yet the indictment states that he was right-handed and was left without full use of his left hand following a previous injury.

The Kansas City Star and KCUR reported that prosecutors suggested Lamb’s gun was removed from his home and planted on him along with multiple bullets after he was shot.

Assistant prosecuting attorney Dion Sankar, right, leads Laurie Bey, mother of Cameron Lamb, to the witness stand to give a statement during the sentencing hearing of former Kansas City police detective Eric DeValkenaere, Friday, March 4, 2022 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Jill Toyoshiba/The Kansas City Star via AP)

Per NBC News, a wrongful death civil lawsuit was filed against DeValkenaere and Kansas City police commissioners in 2021 by the mothers of Lamb’s three sons, alleging a “continuing, widespread, persistent pattern of unconstitutional misconduct of the Kansas City Police Department.”

Following the hearing, Lamb’s mother, Laurie Bey, said the court made “a fair decision” with the six-year sentence, adding: “The mental pain that I deal with — that’s not going to go away,” CNN reported.

According to NBC News, Laurie said post-hearing that “the bottom line is we got the conviction,” adding, “There’s truly no justice, because my son is gone.”

Aquil Bey, Lamb’s stepfather, said: “Preferably, it will shake up this police department. Shake up Kansas City,” CNN reported.

theGrio’s Chauncey Alcorn contributed to this report.

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