Former officer Dominique Heaggan-Brown was found not guilty of first degree reckless homicide and of second degree reckless homicide by negligent use of a weapon by a jury of nine women and three men.
Officers chased Smith on foot after he ran from a traffic stop near 44th and Auer.
Prosecutors had argued before a jury that the first shot was reasonable, but the second shot was not, because Heaggan-Brown had no reason to fear for his life once Smith was on the ground, unarmed. They could have opted for second-degree reckless homicide or homicide by negligent operation of a risky weapon, but jurors acquitted Heaggan-Brown on those charges, too. Bodycam footage showed 1.69 seconds passed between a shot that hit Smith in the arm - as he appeared to be tossing his gun - and the one that hit his chest.
The shooting sparked riots that lasted days in Milwaukee in August of 2016.
He was sacked from the police force, not because of the homicide charges he faced, but because of the allegations of sexual assault.
Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisholm told jurors Heaggan-Brown didn't need to use deadly force against Smith, who had thrown away the gun he was carrying.
During the trial, Heaggan-Brown's lawyer told the jury that the "first shot was a justifiable shot and that justification did not change in 1.69 seconds", The Associated Press reported.
Flynn defended Dominique Heaggan-Brown last August in the aftermath of the death of 23-year-old Sylville Smith.More news: UK's Hammond says economy should be priority in Brexit talks
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Heaggan-Brown was sacked two months later after he was charged in an unrelated sexual assault.
He was charged with first-degree intentional homicide.
Heaggan-Brown's former partner, Ndiva Malafa, testified last week they were chasing Smith, 23, because they saw he had a gun.
Jury deliberations are entering a second day in the trial of a former Milwaukee police officer charged in a fatal shooting that led to riots in the majority African-American neighborhood where it happened.
The second and fatal shot was sacked after Smith tossed his gun and dropped to the ground. As they exited their squad vehicle, Mr. Smith, who was armed with a handgun, darted away and ran into a yard with a chain-link fence.
The 12 person jury, which included four blacks, sided with the defense.
Data shows 82 officers nationwide have been charged with murder or manslaughter for on-duty fatal shootings since 2005, said Philip Stinson, a criminologist at Ohio's Bowling Green State University. According to Fox6, jurors also had the option to pick from two lesser charges instead of first-degree reckless homicide. Heaggan-Brown is also black.