Ex-SFPD officer pleads not guilty in fatal shooting of unarmed man

A former San Francisco police officer pleaded not guilty to homicide charges in connection with the 2017 shooting death of an unarmed man.

Appearing virtually in court on Monday, Christopher Samayoa entered that not guilty plea via Zoom. He is out of custody on his own recognizance with restrictions in place.

Samayoa entered not guilty pleas to felony charges including manslaughter, and firearms charges for the 2017 shooting death of  Keita O'Neil, who was unarmed at the time. A grand jury indicted Samayoa in November, 

"Mr. Samayoa waives formal reading the complaint, and advisement of rights," said Julia Fox, an attorney representing Samayoa. "He is prepared to enter a plea of not guilty and he will be waiving time, your honor."

The judge ordered Samayoa to remain out of jail, but barred him from having a gun or ammunition in his possession and undergo screening for alcohol counseling.

In November San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin charged the former officer for the incident. It was the first time that homicide charges had been brought against a city cop for a fatal act that occurred on duty.

Police pursued O'Neil, believing he had been involved in a robbery and carjacking. When O'Neil got out of a stolen white van and ran past a police patrol vehicle, Samayoa fired his weapon,

O'Neil died from his injuries at a hospital.

Samayoa had only been on the job for four days when the shooting occurred.

Samayoa is due in court for his next appearance February 26th 9am.