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FILE -In this Monday, Dec. 5, 2016 file photo, Michael Slager, center, walks from the Charleston County Courthouse under the protection from the Charleston County Sheriff's Department during a break in the jury deliberations in his trial, in Charleston, S.C. 2015 was supposed to be the uneasy year in South Carolina. The state was stunned by a videotaped police shooting of a fleeing black motorist, nine churchgoers killed in a hate crime, and a billion-dollar flood.(AP Photo/Mic Smith, File)

The officer who fatally shot Walter Scott pleaded guilty to federal civil rights charges

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The officer who fatally shot Walter Scott pleaded guilty to federal civil rights charges

WATCH | The trial of Walter Scott continues. 

The white police officer who shot and killed a black motorist running from a traffic stop pleaded guilty on Tuesday to federal civil rights charges that could land him a life sentence and $250,000 in fines, Time reported. 

Michael Slager, 35, entered the guilty plea after a jury deadlocked on state murder charges five months ago. Knowing that South Carolina prosecutors were interested in a second trial, Slager agreed to plead guilty.

Slager admitted to violating the victim's civil rights by shooting him without reason. A bystander's video, which attracted millions of views online, showed 50-year-old Walter Scott running after struggling with the officer's taser. Slager subsequently fired eight bullets, five of which hit Scott in the back from 17 feet away.

When the video became public, the North Charleston police department fired Slager.

The plea agreement made no mention of race, but Slager admitted to using deadly force knowing that it was "unnecessary and excessive, and therefore unreasonable under the circumstances."

The officer who fatally shot Walter Scott pleaded guilty to federal civil rights charges

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