- Associated Press - Thursday, September 10, 2015

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) - The latest on a bail hearing for a white ex-police officer charged with murder in shooting death of a black man in North Charleston, South Carolina (all times are local):

6:40 p.m.

Attorneys for the family of an unarmed black man shot to death by a police officer say the city of North Charleston’s quota system for pulling people over contributed to his killing.

Justin Bamberg, who represents the family of Walter Scott, says those quotas turned North Charleston officers into monsters looking for any excuse to pull people over and get them into legal messes.

Former officer Michael Slager faces a murder charge in Scott’s death.

Slager’s lawyer also mentioned the quotas at Slager’s bond hearing Thursday, saying North Charleston required its officers to stop three drivers a day. Attorney Andy Savage says Slager was just following his superiors’ instructions when he stopped Scott.

Scott was pulled over for a burned out third brake light. His family says he likely ran from Slager because he owed back child support and didn’t want to go to jail.

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6:15 p.m.

The brother of a man who was shot to death by a police officer says a burden was lifted from his heart when he sat in the same courtroom as the man who killed his brother.

Anthony Scott said after Thursday’s bond hearing for ex-officer Michael Slager that he was glad he could sit in the same room with Slager and not feel hatred toward him.

A judge heard arguments about whether Slager should be given bail, but didn’t make a decision immediately.

Walter Scott was shot to death as he ran from Slager after a traffic stop in North Charleston in April. Slager faces a murder charge.

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5 p.m.

A judge says he will rule later on bail for a white ex-police officer charged with murder in the shooting death of black man in North Charleston, South Carolina.

Judge Clifton Newman said he wanted to review information presented during an afternoon hearing Thursday. He did not say when he would rule on bail for former officer Michael Slager, who is charged in the April 4 shooting death of Walter Scott.

During the hearing Scott’s mother fought back tears as she told the court that Slager committed murder without mercy.

Solicitor Scarlett Wilson said Scott should not have run from the traffic stop that sparked the confrontation, but that didn’t mean Slager “should have become a firing squad.”

Defense attorney Andy Savage said Slager had no criminal record, was an exemplary officer and has a wife and three children. He said Slager is no flight risk because he wants to return to court to clear his name.

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3:30 p.m.

A hearing has gotten underway for a white ex-police officer charged with murder in the shooting death of black man in North Charleston, South Carolina.

Attorneys for former officer Michael Slager want the judge to set bail for their client, but the bail question did not come up in the first 90 minutes of the hearing. Instead, lawyers discussed motions by Slager’s defense seeking items of evidence.

The judge was expected to take up the bail question later in the day, following a recess.

Slager was on hand in the courtroom packed with more than 100 people. Dressed in a gray-and-black striped prison jumpsuit, he consulted quietly with his attorney before the hearing began.

He’s charged in the April 4 shooting death of Walter Scott.

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2:15 p.m.

Just a few protesters are standing outside the Charleston County Courthouse ahead of a bail hearing for an ex-police officer charged with murder.

The three wore shirts that said “black lives matter.” One held a sign that said, “Keep the murderer in jail!”

Several members of the National Action Network, an activist group founded by the Rev. Al Sharpton, sat on benches outside the packed courtroom as the bail hearing started.

The hearing for former police officer Michael Slager was set to begin at 2 p.m. Thursday. The judge was not allowing any live video streaming. Only a few reporters were allowed to attend. Slager is charged with murder in the April shooting of Walter Scott, an unarmed black man who tried to flee from police during a traffic stop.

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4:42 a.m.

A white former police officer charged with murder in the shooting death of a black motorist wants to be released from jail before his trial.

Attorneys for Michael Slager will be in court Thursday seeking the release of the former North Charleston officer charged with murder in the April 4 shooting death of Walter Scott.

A bystander’s cellphone video showed Slager firing eight times as Scott tried to run away from a traffic stop. The incident inflamed the national debate about how blacks are treated by law officers.

Slager has been in solitary confinement since his arrest. Attorneys filed 150 pages of documents this week in support of the bail request including a psychological assessment that Slager poses little danger of doing violence.

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Associated Press writer Jeffrey Collins in Charleston contributed to this report.

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