Walter Scott Shooting: Breaking Down the Witness Video Frame by Frame
A split-second look at what happened between the driver and the police officer.
— -- The cellphone video of the moments when the encounter between a South Carolina police officer and a driver turned deadly was acknowledged by officials as a determining factor in the decision to fire the officer and charge him with murder.
The dramatic video is shot from a distance and shows both when officer Michael Slager began shooting at Walter Scott and the immediate aftermath as other officers arrived on the scene and began to process what happened.
There are some critical moments during the minutes-long footage that call for closer inspection.
Slager was arrested on Tuesday and though he appeared at a bond hearing that evening, he has yet to enter a plea. Over the weekend, Slager was represented by attorney David Aylor, who said in a statement released at the time that Slager "followed all the proper procedures and policies" but that attorney told ABC News on Tuesday he is no longer representing Slager.
The video will undoubtedly be critical to Slager's case. Here is a breakdown of some of the critical moments, some images from which have been rotated so that they can be more clearly understood.
1. Scott and Slager Seen Standing Close to One Another
The cellphone video begins with Walter Scott and North Charleston Police Officer Michael Slager standing close together. This is just before Scott breaks away and starts to run.
2. The Taser Wire Can Be Seen, Appears Attached to Scott's Clothes
As Scott initially turns away from Slager, we see what appears to be a Taser wire connecting the two men.
3. Scott Runs
Scott runs from Slager with his back facing the officer. Slager pulls out his firearm and holds the weapon up, then proceeds to shoot eight times.
4. Slager Walks Over Towards Scott
After Scott falls to the ground, Slager walks over towards the portion of the grass where Scott landed face-down on the ground. He puts away his gun and appears to make a call on his radio.During his next call on the police radio, Slager said: "Shots fired and the subject is down, he took my Taser," the police report notes.
5. Officer Places Handcuffs on Scott
Slager is seen approaching Scott's body and can be heard saying "put your hands behind your back." Once Slager reaches the body, he is seen physically lifting Scott's arms and putting handcuffs around his wrists.
6. Second Officer Arrives on the Scene
Slager walks away from Scott, leaving him face down, as he is heard calling something in on his radio. Slager had previously called for back up and a second officer arrives on the scene, and the video shows that officer, whose name has not been released, appearing to bend down as if to check Scott's pulse.
7. Slager Bends to the Ground
Slager has walked away from the body at this time, and he appears to bend down to the ground. Moments later, the footage seems to show that he has an object in his right hand that was not there before he bent down.
8. Slager Drops Item by Body
Slager then goes back towards Scott. A slowed-down, rotated version of the video appears to show Slager dropping the object from his right hand. It lands near Scott's body. At this point, a second officer has arrived on the scene. It is unclear what the object is.
9. Slager Checks Scott's Pulse
Slager bends down to check Scott’s pulse after his colleague had already done so.
10. Another Officer Talks to Slager, Takes His Gun
Two more officers arrive on the scene and one, who city officials said Tuesday was likely a supervisor, though his identity was not revealed, is seen walking away from the body with Slager. The two men appear to speak for a moment before Slager appears to lift his right arm as the other officer takes something from near Slager’s waist. He appears to remove Slager's gun -- the one Slager used to shoot Scott -- from Slager's holster.