Oscar Grant Was “Uncooperative,” BART Officer Says

BART police Officer Marysol Domenici testified Tuesday that Oscar Grant III was uncooperative before he was shot and killed by former BART police Officer Johannes Mehserle at the Fruitvale station in Oakland on New Year's Day.

Testifying as a defense witness for Mehserle in the fourth day of his preliminary hearing in Alameda County Superior Court, Domenici said Grant, a 22-year-old Hayward man who was unarmed, "didn't follow my command to sit" even though she ordered him to do so multiple times.

The purpose of the hearing is to determine if there's enough evidence to have Mehserle, 27, ordered to stand trial on murder charges.

Domenici said when she pushed back one of Grant's friends, Jackie Bryson, "Grant grabs my left arm and is holding on to me."

Domenici said Grant crouched down at one point but "never sat down on his bottom" and repeatedly said, "This is f---ed up."

Domenici, who has been a BART officer for more than four and a  half years, said Grant apparently was referring to the situation on the Fruitvale station's platform about 2 a.m. on Jan. 1. She said she and other officers responded to reports that there was a fight on a BART train.

Domenici said another of Grant's friends, Michael Greer, "was very uncooperative with police" and refused to get off the train until her partner, Officer Tony Pirone, grabbed him, pulled him off the train and eventually pushed him onto the ground.

Mehserle's lawyer, Michael Rains, told Judge C. Don Clay, who's presiding over the hearing, that he is calling Domenici and other BART officers to the witness stand in an attempt to prove the defense's contention that, "This isn't murder because there's an absence of malice" on Mehserle's part.

Rains said Mehserle, who's free on $3 million bail, "was reacting to a struggling, resistant Mr. Grant."

The defense lawyer alleged that Grant "was not passive, did not have his hands behind his back obeying orders and was resisting until the shot was fired."

Mehserle's lawyer claims his client intended to use his stun gun but accidentally fired his pistol instead.

Mehserle has pleaded not guilty in the case.

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