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Kansas City officer pleads not guilty in Black man's death

The Associated Press

A suspended Kansas City police detective pleaded not guilty Tuesday in the fatal shooting of a Black man who was killed while sitting in his truck in his garage.

Eric J. DeValkenaere, 41, was indicted by a grand jury last week with first-degree involuntary manslaughter and armed criminal action in the Dec. 3 killing of Cameron Lamb, 26.

DeValkenaere remains free after posting a $30,000 bond. His next hearing is scheduled for July 30.

According to court records, DeValkenaere and another officer were investigating an earlier disturbance between two vehicles when they went into Lamb's backyard. DeValkenaere said he shot Lamb, who was still in his truck after backing it into the garage, after Lamb pointed a gun at the other officer.

Lamb's family and other activists have questioned the police account. And Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker said her office was "stymied" by the police department's refusal to provide a probable cause statement to prosecutors.

Police said Lamb's left arm was hanging out of the truck and a gun was found on the ground beneath his hand.

Lamb is right-handed and he did not have full use of his left hand as a result of an injury sustained in 2015, according to prosecutors.