Missouri drops charges against officer indicted in shooting of man

A Missouri prosecutor on Friday dismissed charges against a Kansas City police officer indicted in February by a grand jury for the non-fatal shooting of a 37-year-old man last summer.

The dismissal comes amid heightened attention to police shootings after a murder charge against a North Charleston, South Carolina police officer and the decision by a grand jury last November not to indict a Ferguson, Missouri officer who fatally shot an unarmed man.

Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker said an investigation and legal analysis found that evidence no longer supported the charges against 31-year-old Jacob Ramsey.

A state grand jury charged Ramsey with first-degree assault and armed criminal action in the shooting of Anthony Contreras last June.

Kansas City police said Ramsey was making a warrant check when Contreras ran from a house. Police said he feared he was about to be shot and fired at Contreras, critically wounding him.

A plea of not guilty was entered for Ramsey in February. Baker said on Friday she could not carry the charges forward.

"Like all prosecutors, we have a duty to be convinced that evidence supports a defendant's guilt beyond a reasonable doubt," Baker said in a statement. "Our subsequent investigation convinced us that burden could not be met."

(Editing by Curtis Skinner and Clarence Fernandez)