Former Kingsland cop charged with manslaughter wants immunity

Trial in Camden County court scheduled to start later this month

By Jim Piggott - Reporter

KINGSLAND, Ga. - A former Kingsland police officer about to stand trial on a charge of manslaughter in the shooting death of an unarmed man running from a traffic stop has filed a motion for immunity from prosecution.  

In the motion, Zechariah Presley said he was defending himself when he shot and killed 33-year-old Tony Green after a traffic stop last summer. 

Presley was on duty June 20, 2018, when he shot and killed Green. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation report said the two men had a brief struggle before Presley shot Green multiple times as he tried to run away. Presley was arrested shortly after the shooting and terminated by the Kingsland Police Department. A Camden County grand jury found Presley violated his oath of office and indicted him on a charge of voluntary manslaughter.

Green's family and friends protested because Presley with not charged with murder.

With his trial set to begin later this month, Presley's attorney filed a motion asking the judge find Presley "immune to prosecution because he was reasonably defending himself against the alleged victim."

Thursday night the pastor from Green's church reached out to News4Jax. Mike Knight said they are totally outraged and upset by the motion and were surprised that it was filed. 

What went down the night of the shooting is still unclear and much of that could be brought out in court during the trial. A hearing on the motion for immunity is set for Sept. 24. At that time, the judge could decide to accept it and throw out the charges against Presley or let the case go to trial.

News4Jax requested an interview with Presley's attorney. She has not replied.

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