Latest on athlete's death: Prayer rally set with officials

AP News
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Posted: Aug 12, 2015 5:11 PM

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — The latest on the fatal shooting by police in Texas of unarmed college football player Christian Taylor (all times CDT):

3:30 p.m.

A prayer rally set in the Texas town where an unarmed, black college football player was fatally shot by a police officer during a suspected burglary at a car dealership will include the city's mayor, police chief and two local pastors.

Pastor Dwight McKissic Sr. is hosting the event Wednesday evening at Cornerstone Baptist Church in Arlington. Mayor Jeff Williams, Police Chief Will Johnson and local pastor Gary Smith will also attend.

The four will address those gathered and take questions. A statement from the church says the event was designed for young people to share their grief, vent their frustrations and ask questions following the fatal shooting of 19-year-old Christian Taylor on Friday.

Brad Miller, the officer in training who fatally shot Taylor, has been fired. Miller is white.

Taylor's death came two days before the anniversary of the death of Michael Brown, an unarmed, black 18-year-old who was fatally shot by a white police officer in Ferguson, Missouri, and is the latest in a series of incidents in which black men have been killed by police.

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11 a.m.

The attorney for a Texas police officer fired after fatally shooting an unarmed college football player during a suspected burglary at a car dealership is defending his client's actions and insulting those of the police chief.

Attorney John Snider said in a statement Wednesday to The Associated Press that his client, Brad Miller, "made decisions in the heat of a violent confrontation to save his and other officers' lives."

Arlington Police Chief Will Johnson said Tuesday that Miller had been fired for making mistakes that caused a deadly confrontation that put him and other officers in danger, including pursuing 19-year-old Christian Taylor without telling his supervising officer. Miller could also face criminal charges.

Snider said Johnson used "20/20 hindsight to protect his job and appease anti-police activists." Snider also says Johnson fears "losing his six-figure salary."