Former Metro Police Officer Andrew Delke will avoid a court trial for the murder of Daniel Hambrick.
Delke agreed to a three-year plea deal for voluntary manslaughter rather than face a first-degree murder charge.
According to reports, Delke could be eligible for parole after 15 months.
According to Hambrick’s mother, Vicy Hambrick, the family was not consulted about the plea deal and are upset calling it “the ultimate disrespect.”
“I can’t believe this, Judge, I can’t believe this,” said Ms. Hambrick in court. “What if it was your child instead of my child? It would have been a different story.”
District Attorney Glen Funk defended the deal saying had the case gone to trial that he felt there was a good chance of it ending in a hung jury.
“And no verdict, no judgment, no accountability,” he said. “The emotion that we saw in this courtroom today would have been played out 100-fold, if there had been no accountability in this case.”
Funk pointed out that before this case, no Nashville police officer had ever been convicted of shooting a Black man while on duty.
“Well, now there has been,” Mr. Funk said. “He’s been convicted. He’s a convicted felon, a convicted felon for the rest of his life.”
“Our thoughts are with Daniel Hambrick’s family today, who have endured an unspeakable loss,” said Mayor John Cooper in a statement following news of the deal. “We remain committed to policing reforms and violence prevention in our city.”
Hambrick was fatally shot in the back by Delke in 2018 while fleeing arrest.
Earlier this year, the Metro Council approved a $2.5 million settlement for the Hambrick family.
The Metro Minority Caucus issued the following statement:
“Today’s plea deal was an insult to the family of Daniel Hambrick and the Nashville community as a whole. While we understand the risk that is associated with going to trial, accepting a three-year plea deal does not hold former Officer Delke fully accountable for his brazen actions.
“This deal ensures that Andrew Delke will be free and reunited with his family, after murdering Daniel Hambrick, in less time than many Black and Brown individuals get for significantly less egregious offenses.
“We all agree that our justice system is deeply flawed. While there is no amount of time that would bring back Daniel Hambrick, we must send a firm message of accountability in cases of police brutality. Our prayers are with the Hambrick family and the Nashville community.”