Aaron Cody Smith, a former Montgomery, Alabama police officer, who was convicted of manslaughter for the shooting death of an unarmed black man back in 2016 has been sentenced to 14 years in prison.
According to the Associated Press, Smith was sentenced on Wednesday, bringing the case of the 2016 killing of 58-year-old Gregory Gunn closure.
Smith stopped Gunn in a west Montgomery neighborhood to question him because he apparently matched the description of someone who fled from the then-officer at an earlier point, according to the Montgomery Adviser.
Gunn fled the stop and somehow Smith escalated the situation by chasing Gunn, tasing him, beating him and then fired his weapon seven times. Five of the bullets struck Gunn.
The defense argued that Smith was in fear of his life since he was in a “high-crime” area on his own. He fired at Gunn after Gunn grabbed a painter’s pole from a neighbor’s home, the defense claimed.
However, prosecutors insisted that Gunn was never a threat, and back in November, a jury agreed with that assessment.
“You did what you intended to do. You killed my brother. You hung him. You were the prosecutor, the judge, and jury,” Kenneth Gunn said during the sentencing hearing, according to the report.
Smith apologized to the Gunn family during the sentencing hearing, again insisting he never intended to kill the older man.
“I know an apology is not good enough for you all, but I truly am sorry for your loss,” Smith said.