April 14, 2016 8:46 am

Nanaimo RCMP officer acquitted in traffic stop shooting

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A Nanaimo RCMP officer has been acquitted seven years after shooting an unarmed man.

In September 2009, Constable David Pompeo shot William Gillespie during a traffic stop in Chemainus.

In 2013, Pompeo was found guilty of aggravated assault, but a year later won an appeal for a new trial.

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The trial heard that Pompeo, who worked in the Duncan, B.C., detachment, was with another officer when they began a brief vehicle chase after Gillespie. Pompeo said they were trying to stop the man for driving while prohibited.

Both officers pulled out their guns at Gillespie and his passenger, and Pompeo told his trial he shot the man because he thought he was reaching for a weapon in his pocket.

Pompeo claimed his use of lethal force was necessary to save his own life.

Gillespie was in critical condition for 10 days after getting shot.

That trial took place last November with the court hearing witness testimony that had been previously excluded.

On Wednesday, the officer was acquitted of assault.

Pompeo is still serving as a member of the RCMP.

-With files from the Canadian Press 

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