OAKLAND -- The state Supreme Court refused this week to consider an appeal of former BART police officer Johannes Mehserle's involuntary manslaughter conviction reached two years ago by a Los Angeles jury for killing passenger Oscar Grant.
Mehserle's attorney. Michael Rains, had asked the Supreme Court to review a decision by the 1st District Court of Appeal which unanimously agreed in June that the jury in the Mehserle case reached a proper decision in finding Mehserle guilty of involuntary manslaughter.
Rains had argued that the jury reached its conclusion despite a lack of evidence to support it and because the judge in the case did not properly instruct the jury.
The court of appeals rejected those arguments earlier this year and on Wednesday the state Supreme Court decided it would not review the case.
With the Supreme Court refusing to review the case, Mehserle can now appeal to the federal court system.
Mehserle, originally charged with murder in the case, was sentenced to two years in prison and served about a year at the Los Angeles County Men's Jail.
Mehserle testified during his trial that he made a fatal mistake during the early morning hours of Jan. 1, 2009 when he shot Grant in the back as the 22-year-old was lying on the Fruitvale BART station platform.
Mehserle said that was trying to use his Taser against Grant but grabbed his gun by mistake and shot the 22-year-old Hayward man in the back.