No charges to be laid against officers who killed Lindani Myeni - report

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Lindani Myeni and his wife Lindsay.
Lindani Myeni and his wife Lindsay.
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  • No charges will be laid against the police officers who killed SA-born rugby player Lindani Myeni.
  • He was shot dead in Hawaii in April.
  • The family will be pursuing a civil suit, the family's lawyers said.

No charges will laid against Hawaii police officers who shot SA-born rugby player Lindani Myeni dead in April, according to reports.

In a news conference on Wednesday, Honolulu prosecutor Steve Alm told Hawaii News Now that a months-long investigation found that the fatal shooting was justified.

READ | Lindani Myeni: 'Very different story' emerges as new video released of SA man's death in Hawaii

Honolulu police shot said they were responding to a 911 burglary call when they shot Myeni. Police bodycam footage showed Myeni attacking officers.

However, doorbell footage suggested that he thought he was visiting a temple and was at the wrong address.

Myeni's wife Lindsay alleged in a wrongful death lawsuit that police were motivated by racial discrimination against an unarmed black man.

But the investigation found that the officers involved had "ended up trying to use multiple non-lethal, non-deadly force methods before they used service firearms", Alm told Hawaii News Now.

READ | Lindani Myeni killing: SA Consul-General in Los Angeles still waiting on police report

He said the first responding officer fired in self-defence, and that the second officer fired in defence of the first officer. The investigation also found no "evidence race played a role in the case".

According to Hawaii Public Radio, a 65-page report of the investigation, the autopsy and medical examiner's report, all body camera footage of the incident, police reports, and the 911 calls are expected to be made public.

However, the Myeni's family's lawyer, Bridget Morgan-Bickerton, said in a statement that the family's civil case would not be affected by the decision.

"We continue to move ahead. In the civil case, we will address the central questions that Mr Alm appears to have avoided completely. When you avoid addressing the very first wrongful act committed, your analysis of what comes afterwards should not be accepted by the public.

"Mr Alm's focus on the shooting ignored the first action of ordering an unarmed person to lie on the ground at gunpoint. This is ordinarily the crime of terroristic threatening, kidnapping or reckless endangering," the statement read.

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