Mohamed Noor is demanding a new trial after a Minneapolis jury found him guilty of murdering Australia's Justine Ruszczyk Damond.
Mohamed Noor is demanding a new trial after a Minneapolis jury found him guilty of murdering Australia's Justine Ruszczyk Damond.

US officer who shot Justine Damond appeals

The former US police officer who shot dead Australian life coach Justine Ruszczyk Damond in an alley behind her Minneapolis home claims his murder conviction "debased the criminal justice system".

Mohamed Noor, who is serving a 12.5 year prison sentence after a Minneapolis jury found him guilty a year ago of third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter, filed an appeal on Friday.

The 34-year-old is requesting a new trial.

"Noor's prosecution was a sordid series of events that debased the criminal justice system," Noor's legal team wrote in a 69-page appellant's brief filed in the Minnesota Court of Appeals.

"Noor's convictions must be reversed and his case remanded for a new trial."

Ms Damond's tragic death and Noor's conviction created global headlines.

Ms Damond, 40, originally from Sydney, was weeks away from marrying her American fiance Don Damond.

She was home alone just before midnight on July 15, 2017 when she heard a woman's screams coming from the alley.

She called 911 and when Noor's police vehicle pulled up in the dark alley she walked out barefoot and in her pyjamas.

Noor claimed he thought he was being ambushed and, while sitting in his police car, shot across his partner Matthew Harrity.

The bullet went out the vehicle's window and fatally struck Ms Damond in the stomach.

Noor, in his appeal, claims he was deprived of his due-process right when he was prevented from "providing crucial context" for why he perceived an ambush.

Noor also claimed there was insufficient evidence to sustain his third degree murder conviction and overcome his defence he reasonably used deadly force as a police officer.

The appeal also argues prosecutors "drew on demographic and gender biases to suggest that it was unreasonable for Noor to fear for his and Officer Harrity's safety".

Noor's lawyers describe how prosecutors emphasised to the jury Ms Damond was "a Caucasian female" living in a "peaceful, single-family, residential neighbourhood in South Minneapolis".

"The State repeatedly sought to shield from the jury the context for Noor's perception that he and his partner were under ambush, even though that perception is precisely why Noor decided to use deadly force," Noor's lawyers wrote.

"Simply put, the State sought to deny Noor even the ability to defend himself."

Ms Damond's family filed a $US50 million ($A79 million) civil lawsuit against Minneapolis last year and just days after Noor's conviction the city agreed to pay $US20 million ($A31 million).

Originally published as US officer who shot Justine Damond appeals


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