Egypt's highest appeals court has overturned the conviction of a police officer sentenced to 15 years for the killing of a female protester in January last year.

Cassation Court Judge Taha Qassim also ordered a retrial of the officer, Yassin Hatem Salah Eddin, who was convicted in June last year

The Jan. 24, 2015 killing of Shaimaa el-Sabbagh, a 32-year-old activist and mother of a small boy, struck a nerve with many Egyptians after images of her after she was shot were widely circulated on social media.

Her death also stoked anger over alleged police brutality.

Authorities had initially denied that police had anything to do with the killing.