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WABE - APD Officer Guilty of Lying in No-knock Trial

News Article

Location: Atlanta, GA

There's mixed reaction from community leaders about the verdict in the trial of an Atlanta police officer involved in the Kathryn Johnston shooting.

Officer Arthur Tesler was found guilty of 1 of 3 charges against him.

With its verdict, the jury decided Tesler lied to federal investigators but did not violate his oath of office or false imprison Johnston in her home.

After speaking to Johnston's family, Rev. Markel Hutchins said they feel the verdict is bittersweet.

HUTCHINS: Nothing will bring back Kathryn Johnston but to the extent that her life can be used as an investment in making sure that no further citizens are violated in the way that she has been violated I think is a step in the right direction and a step towards progress.

Tesler faces up to 5 years in prison for lying. But that's not good enough for Atlanta lawmaker Able Mable Thomas whose state house district includes Johnston's home.

THOMAS: I think that clearly Ms. Kathryn Johnston's life is much more than the possible 5 years this officer may get for this one count. So, I think this community should still have an outcry and not let it end here.

However, Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard hopes the Vine City neighborhood where the shooting occurred finds closure in the jury's verdict.

HOWARD: We are pleased with the fact that three police officers from the Atlanta Police Department were involved and as we sit today all three of those officers are incarcerated.

A judge will sentence Tesler on Thursday.

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