Crime & Justice

Oakland violence after Los Angeles train shooting verdict

A Los Angeles jury convicted a white former transit officer of involuntary manslaughter Thursday in the videotaped slaying of an unarmed black man on an Oakland train platform.

The conviction on the lesser charge sparked violent protests in Oakland that damaged about a dozen businesses and led to the arrest of dozens of people.

Businesses damaged included a Foot Locker store that was looted and a jewelry store that was ransacked. Firefighters were also called to put out fires in several trash bins.

Prosecutors wanted Johannes Mehserle (yoh-HAH'-nes MEZ'-ur-lee) to be convicted of murder for the New Year's Day 2009 killing of Oscar Grant, who was shot once in the back as he lay face-down.

Near Oakland City Hall, a crowd moaned and cursed when they heard the verdict.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.