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Public defender may represent Michael Slager, replace Andy Savag - Live5News.com | Charleston, SC | News, Weather, Sports

Public defender may represent Michael Slager, replace Andy Savage in murder retrial

Michael Slager testified in court in his state trial in November. (Source: Pool) Michael Slager testified in court in his state trial in November. (Source: Pool)
CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) -

Michael Slager asked a judge Tuesday for a public defender to represent him in his retrial for murder in the shooting death of Walter Scott.

If the judge approves, Chief Public Defender Ashley Pennington will replace Andy Savage as the former North Charleston officer's lead attorney.

During a hearing, Pennington told Judge Clifton Newman that Slager is indigent and meets the financial requirements to have a taxpayer-funded lawyer. Pennington asked Newman to allow Savage to stay on the case in an advisory capacity.

Newman did not immediately rule on Pennington's motion to represent Slager.

Slager's first trial ended in a mistrial in December 2016 because of a hung jury.

During Tuesday's hearing, Savage asked the judge to dismiss the murder indictment against Slager, citing double jeopardy. Savage says Slager can't be tried twice for murder because the jury in his first trial leaned towards acquittal or manslaughter.

Newman also did not rule immediately on that motion.

Slager shot and killed Walter Scott after a traffic stop on April 4, 2015. Slager claims Scott grabbed his stun gun and tried to use it on him.

The ex-cop's retrial is scheduled for August.

Slager also is scheduled to go on trial in federal court in May on charges he violated Scott's civil rights.

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