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Andrew Rolle sentenced to life in prison for killing Miami police officer

28-year-old mistook off-duty officer's white Ford Taurus for getaway car

A jury found Rolle, also known as "Birdman," guilty of first-degree murder. He killed Miami police officer James Walker on Jan. 8, 2008, during a North Miami Beach shooting.
A jury found Rolle, also known as "Birdman," guilty of first-degree murder. He killed Miami police officer James Walker on Jan. 8, 2008, during a North Miami Beach shooting.

MIAMI – A South Florida man has been sentenced to life in prison for killing an off-duty Miami police officer in 2008.

Judge Marisa Tinkler Mendez handed down the mandatory sentence Monday for Andrew Rolle. A jury found the 28-year-old guilty of first-degree murder earlier this month in the January 2008 shooting of Detective James Walker.

"That day you went to the one-way alley with murder on your mind," the judge said.

Assistant state attorney Abbe Rifkin said Rolle wanted to kill Ricardo Ajust, a rival gang member, who had stolen a gun from him.

A friend in a white Ford Taurus dropped Rolle off, police said. He used an AK-47 to fire several shots.

Rolle didn't shoot Ajust. Instead, he shot at Wesner Senobe, who later testified he did not know Rolle and couldn't recognize him.

After shooting at Senobe, Rolle ran up to Walker, 30, who was in an unmarked white Ford Taurus. Prosecutors claimed Rolle got confused and thought it was his getaway ride.

"It is time for Mr. Rolle to pay the piper," Rifkin said, adding that Rolle should be in a place "where he can longer hurt anyone."

Rolle's defense attorney David Peckins said Walker pulled out his revolver and fired at him first. Peckins said Rolle did not know Walker was a police officer.

A disagreement over a transcript of witness testimony prompted a mistrial in June. Defense attorneys said prosecutors did not turn over the transcript.

Rolle was already serving a 50-year prison sentence. He was convicted of being involved in two armed robberies in unrelated cases.

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