Trial opens in Michigan trooper’s fatal use of Taser

Posted at 1:57 PM, Oct 23, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-23 13:57:27-04

DETROIT (AP) — A prosecutor has told jurors that a Michigan state trooper used unreasonable force when he fired a Taser at a Detroit teenager who then crashed an all-terrain vehicle and died.

Trial opened Tuesday for Mark Bessner, who is charged with second-degree murder in the death of 15-year-old Damon Grimes. Bessner fired his Taser from a moving patrol car, striking the teen twice before the crash in August 2017.

Assistant prosecutor Matthew Penney says Grimes was breaking the law by driving the ATV on a city street. But he says Grimes was a risk to himself, not others.

Defense attorney Richard Convertino told jurors that Bessner believed the teen had a weapon. He wasn’t armed. Convertino says the scene was tense.

Bessner quit the state police after the incident.