Cook County Judge Dennis Porter stunned a Chicago courtroom today when he issued a directed verdict and effectively ended the trial of Dante Servin, a white Chicago detective charged with involuntary manslaughter for the 2012 killing of Rekia Boyd, the Chicago Sun Times reported.
Judge Porter “cleared [Servin] of all charges,” Chicago’s WBBM reported, which included criminal charges for involuntary manslaughter, reckless conduct and the reckless discharge of a firearm. Servin faced a bench trial–meaning a judge, and not a jury, would decide his fate–which began on April 9.
Boyd, 22, died after being shot in the head by Servin in March 2012. Servin approached a group of people, Boyd among them, near his home after complaining about loud drinking and partying. An argument ensued and Servin opened fire from inside his car when, he said, he saw Boyd’s friend Antonio Cross reach for what he believed was a gun, Chicago’s ABC7 reported. Servin allegedly feared for his life and fired five shots, injuring Cross and fatally wounding Boyd with a shot to the back of her head.
Porter said Monday that prosecutors failed to prove that Servin acted recklessly, stating instead that the shooting was intentional, Chicago’s WGNTV reported. All three charges hinged on the prosecution’s being able to prove that the shooting was a reckless act, however. “The evidence does not support the charges on which the defendant is being tried,” Porter said, the Sun-Times reported.