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The Latest: Expert believes officer justified in shooting

FILE - In this May 30, 2017, file photo, St. Anthony police officer Jeronimo Yanez stands outside the Ramsey County Courthouse while waiting for a ride in St. Paul, Minn. Opening statements are expected to begin Monday, June 5, 2017, in the trial for officer Yanez, who is charged with second-degree manslaughter in the death of Philando Castile during a traffic stop in the St. Paul suburb of Falcon Heights in July 2015. (David Joles/Star Tribune via AP, File)

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Latest on the trial of a Minnesota police officer in the fatal shooting of motorist Philando Castile (all times local):

4:45 p.m.

A use-of-force expert has testified that a Minnesota police officer was right to use deadly force in the fatal shooting last July of a black motorist who had informed him he was carrying a gun.

Joseph Dutton testified Thursday for the defense. Dutton is convinced that Officer Jeronimo Yanez saw a gun before he shot Philando Castile during a traffic stop in a St. Paul suburb.

Prosecutors argue Yanez acted unreasonably in shooting Castile. Yanez is charged with manslaughter.

Dutton was a police officer for 31 years and now teaches classes on use of force. He says he reviewed videos and police reports. He says he’s convinced by Yanez telling investigators he saw Castile’s hand form a C-shaped grip of the sort that would be used to grab a thick-gripped pistol.

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3 p.m.

A toxicology expert says he believes a black motorist who was shot to death during a traffic stop in Minnesota was under the influence of marijuana.

Glenn Hardin, a former supervisor of Minnesota’s state toxicology lab, testified Thursday as a witness for Officer Jeronimo Yanez. Yanez is charged with manslaughter in the death of 32-year-old Philando Castile last July in a St. Paul suburb.

Defense attorneys have argued Castile was stoned at the time of the shooting, which happened in the seconds after he informed Yanez that he was carrying a gun. Hardin said he examined autopsy reports showing Castile’s blood levels of THC, the substance in marijuana that gives a high.

Prosecutor Jeff Paulsen attacked Hardin’s testimony by citing studies he said show there’s no way to determine marijuana intoxication from blood samples.

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10:55 a.m.

A Minnesota police chief is testifying in the manslaughter trial of his officer in the shooting death of a black motorist.

Chief Jon Mangseth was one of the first witnesses as the defense began its case at the trial of St. Anthony Police Officer Jeronimo Yanez. Yanez is charged in the death of 32-year-old Philando Castile during a traffic stop last July in a St. Paul suburb.

Yanez shot Castile five times barely a minute after he approached the car and Castile informed the officer that he was carrying a handgun. Key issues are where Castile’s gun was and whether Yanez saw it.

Attorney Paul Engh asked the chief whether it would be proper to shoot a person who had his hand on a gun and refused commands.

Mangseth said such a situation would be “very concerning” and said he would expect “action to be taken.”

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12:10 a.m.

Prosecutors may wrap up their case Thursday against a Minnesota police officer charged with manslaughter in the death of a black motorist.

Officer Jeronimo Yanez is accused in the July death of 32-year-old Philando Castile, an elementary school cafeteria worker, during a traffic stop in a St. Paul suburb.

Castile was licensed to carry a handgun and told Yanez he had one when the officer approached his car. Prosecutors say the officer acted unreasonably in shooting Castile.

Yanez’s attorneys argue that his actions were reasonable in the presence of a gun. The officer is expected to testify when the defense presents its case.

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