An ex-cop detective from Kansas City, Mo. who shot and killed a man in a truck at his homein 2019, was sentenced to six years in prison.
Eric DeValkenaere was sentenced to a three year sentence for involuntary 2nd-degree manslaughter, which resulted in the death Cameron Lamb (26), and a six year sentence for armed criminal activity. Both sentences will run simultaneously.
Prosecutors claimed that Lamb was following his girlfriend's convertible with an allegedly stolen pickup. Initial police statements stated that they had tracked the truck to a house and confronted Lamb, who was still in the pickup in his driveway.
DeValkenaere opened fire on his colleague detective, saying he was afraid for his life because Lamb pointed a gun towards him.
Prosecutors stated that DeValkenaere should not have confronted DeValkenaere on the property of his residence without a warrant.
They also challenged police evidence by claiming that Lamb held his left hand on the truck’s steering wheel, and his phone in his right before the shooting.
A police officer who was present at the scene of the shooting testified that he did not see any gun near Lamb's corpse, even though it was later captured in photos. According to the officer, the victim's left arm was visible through the pickup's driver side window.
Jackson County Circuit Court Judge J. Dale Youngs handed down the sentence. He found that DeValkenaere had violated the Lamb’s civil rights by entering Lamb’s property without a warrant and permission.
Demonstrators claimed that the case was yet another example of a police killing in which a White officer was involved and a Black male. A march was organized in June 2020 to seek justice for George Floyd and Lamb .
In June 2021 , the mothers of Lamb's young sons filed a civil suit against DeValkenaere as well as the city's Board of Police Commissioners. The suit claimed that the Kansas City Police Department had engaged in "continuing, widespread and persistent unconstitutional misconduct."
Donna Drake, Kansas City Officer, stated in an email that the department doesn't comment on pending litigation to ensure fairness for all.
DeValkenaere was found guilty Nov. 19. She stated that DeValkenaere's last day of employment was Jan. 23. Drake didn't disclose the reason Drake was fired, citing Missouri’s "sunshine" law.
After DeValkenaere's guilty verdict, Chief Rick Smith of the Police announced that he would retire by 2022.
A lawyer representing DeValkenaere informed NBC affiliate KSHB Kansas City that an appeal would be filed soon. According to the station, Youngs had previously ruled that DeValkenaere would be allowed to remain on bond while he appealed.
Friday's six-year sentence was addressed outside the Jackson County Courthouse by Laurie Bey, Lamb's mother.
She stated that the bottom line was that we were convicted, but later added: "There is truly no justice because my son has gone."