Death sought in SC police ambush, suspect insults prosecutor

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Frederick Hopkins speaks Thursday, June 11, 2020, during a hearing in Florence, S.C., where a prosecutor announced he would seek the death penalty against Hopkins for the October 2018 shooting of seven police officers, two fatally. Hopkins spent eight minutes insulting the prosecutor and complaining he didn’t have a preliminary hearing. (Matthew Christian/The Morning News via AP)

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A prosecutor has announced he will seek the death penalty against a South Carolina man charged with shooting seven police officers in an ambush, killing two of them.

These hearings are typically routine and last just a few minutes. But defendant Frederick Hopkins spoke for eight minutes insulting prosecutor Ed Clements and saying he wasn’t given a preliminary hearing in the time provided by law.

Hopkins twice called Clements “Fat Eddie.”

The judge abruptly ended the hearing. Hopkins lawyer wasn’t in the courtroom and the judge didn’t question Hopkins about why.

Hopkins’ lawyer said she couldn’t comment because of a gag order in the case.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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