SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, June 23, 2017 (Gephardt Daily) — Abdullahi “Abdi” Mohamed, whose shooting by Salt Lake City Police officers sparked international headlines and local protests, has accepted a plea deal to resolve his juvenile court case.
The original charges against Mohamed were aggravated robbery, a first-degree felony, and drug possession with intent to distribute, a second-degree felony. Prosecutors also tried to get the cased moved to the adult court system, where penalties were potentially more harsh, but failed in that attempt.
In the plea deal, Mohamed, 19, pleaded guilty to two third-degree felony charges of aggravated assault and attempted possession of a controlled substance.
Judge Julie Lund sentenced Mohamed to a $500 fine, and suggested he take advantage of counseling and a substance abuse treatment program that had been made available to him.
Mohamed was 17 years old on Feb. 27, 2017, when police spotted him beating a man with a metal broom handle. When Mohamed did not immediately respond to commands to stop, officers shot him.
One officer later admitted to believing the metal handle was a sword. A review board has since cleared the two officers of any wrongdoing in the case.
According to charging documents, Mohamed, then 17, was beating a man who had asked to buy a marijuana cigarette from him for $1.10. Mohamed told the man he was selling meth, and became angry when the man handed him the broomstick, according to court documents.
The shooting caused a brief riot in the immediate area, near the homeless center in the Rio Grand area of downtown Salt Lake City. Area residents yelled and threw rocks and bottles at the police. Officers from all over the Salt Lake Valley responded to the scene.
The teen was struck by four bullets and now uses a wheelchair.
In court, Lund told Mohamed she was frustrated by the situation because she had seen him in her courtroom multiple times since he was 12. She advised him to take advantage of the counseling, despite the fact that a caseworker’s report had concluded he would not. Lund wished him luck.
Mohamed’s case has drawn international attention from groups that say police brutality was involved in the case.
Leaving court in his wheelchair, Mohamed reportedly declined to talk to news organizations other than to say he wanted to move on with his life.