North Miami police officer declines plea deal ahead of retrial

Officer Jonathan Aledda previously acquitted on 1 count of culpable negligence

By Liane Morejon - Reporter, Amanda Batchelor - Senior Digital Editor

MIAMI - North Miami police Officer Jonathan Aledda will be going to trial again after he declined a plea deal offered by the state.

If he had accepted the deal, Aledda would have pleaded guilty to one misdemeanor count of culpable negligence. Under the plea, he would have served a year of probation and lost his law enforcement certification.

Aledda was charged with two counts of attempted manslaughter and two counts of culpable negligence in the 2016 shooting of Charles Kinsey.

In March, a jury acquitted Aledda of one of the culpable negligence counts, but remained hung on the other charges.

Authorities said Kinsey, a mental health therapist, was shot in the leg in July 2016 as he sat on the ground with his hands up next to his autistic patient, Arnaldo Rios, who was playing with a silver toy truck, which a 911 caller thought was a gun.

The count for which jurors returned the not guilty verdict pertains to culpable negligence for shooting at Rios.

Aledda, 32, testified that Rios "was moving around the whole time" and pointed the toy, which Aledda also believed was a gun, in the direction of another officer before turning around and pointing it at Kinsey. 

He said he fired at that time, believing Rios was going to shoot Kinsey. 

Authorities said Aledda fired three shots at Rios, but missed and struck Kinsey once in the leg. 

Defense attorney Douglas Hartman told Local 10 News in March that they were disappointed with the overall verdict, although he said jurors were 5-1 for acquittal on the other three counts.
 

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