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Clinton On Diallo: Race Had Role

President Clinton says he believes race was a factor in the Amadou Diallo shooting.

In his first public comments on the case, he said he's not trying to second-guess the jury that acquitted four white New York police officers of second degree murder charges. But he said he knows most Americans believe that "if it had been a young white man, in a young all-white neighborhood, it probably wouldn't have happened."

Mr. Clinton made the comments Friday night at a Democratic fund-raiser in San Francisco.

Earlier, lawyers for the four acquitted officers said they will meet with Attorney General Janet Reno's top deputy Monday and urge him not to pursue civil rights charges, as Diallo's family is urging.

One of the lawyers says there's no basis for such a prosecution, and he says the acquittals came after a fair trial.

The Diallo Case: A Timeline