Appeals court upholds conviction, sentence of Marksville officer

Appeals court upholds conviction, sentence of Marksville officer
Derrick Stafford (Source: Louisiana State Police)

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - The 3rd Circuit Court of Appeal has upheld the conviction and sentence of former Marksville officer Derrick Stafford.

Stafford was found guilty of manslaughter and attempted manslaughter in the shooting of Christopher Few and the death of Few's son, 6-year-old Jeremy Mardis, during a police chase in 2015.

When Few's vehicle stopped, Stafford fired 14 times toward the vehicle while fellow officer Norris Greenhouse fired four times.

Stafford claimed the shooting was self-defense, testifying during his trial that he believed Few had backed his vehicle toward Greenhouse, at which point he "felt (he) had no choice but to save Norris."

Three bullets from Stafford's gun struck Jeremy.

Stafford's defense claimed five errors, including that evidence of other prior confrontations Stafford had while acting in his capacity as an officer should not have been brought before the jury and that his sentencing was constitutionally excessive. The appeals court denied them all.

Read the 3rd Circuit's ruling here:

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