Protests in Charlotte have occurred for a second night in row. Throughout the evening police launched a substantial arsenal of projectiles and gas into crowds of people protesting the killing of Keith Lamont Scott earlier this week.
Unsubstantiated reports have been made that police shot a protester with live ammunition. Police are claiming the person was shot by a member of the public, and there is a video circulating that depicts a person wounded from a less lethal projectile.
While Charlotte braces for a third night off civil unrest, there are several factors in this killing that need to be examined. A disabled father was killed on his property while waiting for his son to come home from school. Let that sink in for minute.
Watch the video of the aftermath below…
Why did police even target Scott? Police claimed they were in the area looking for someone else with outstanding warrants. But they compromised their operation by approaching Scott.
FACT: In order for an officer to initiate a detention, there needs to be an articulable fact that links someone to a crime that is or is about to occur. Sitting, reading, and waiting for your child to come home from school doesn’t constitute reasonable suspicion.
FACT: In order for the police to be allowed to use deadly force, they must be in fear for their safety or the safety of others, and the person must present an immediate threat to life or great bodily harm. Police justified shooting Scott claiming that they witnessed him get out of his parked car with a gun, then get back in the car, then get back out of the car with the gun again.
While there is no proof that this happened, (and even if it did) North Carolina is an open carry state. The mere sight of a firearm neither constitutes reasonable suspicion nor justifies deadly force.
It is also important to note that Scott’s family claims Scott was unarmed when he was killed, and that the police were working in an undercover/plain clothes capacity. Hypothetically if Scott did have a firearm (which is not illegal) and was approached on his property by armed men that weren’t or didn’t identify themselves as police, Scott legally would have had the right defend himself.
The Constitution and Bill of Rights are supposed to protect all people from unlawful stops, searches, and seizures. As of today, police haven’t presented any evidence to support shooting Scott. However police have admitted that some officers present were wearing body cameras.
If the body camera videos supported the officer’s narrative, why not release them in the name of transparency?
Watch the local report below…
Local conditions with police, and a lack of transparency in this shooting has led to two nights of open street rebellions between people and the police. A State of Emergency has been called to quell the unrest. Wouldn’t this be the perfect time to release body camera videos and other pieces of evidence? Or could it be that video taken will not corroborate the police version of what happened.
Either way, it’s time to release the tapes. Help make that happen by calling,
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department: 704-336-7600
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Mayors Office: 704-336-2241
(Article by Jacob Crawford)
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