Videos of Char­lotte shoot­ing re­leased

Po­lice chief re­lents, says they no longer pose threat to probe

USA TODAY Weekend Extra - - FRONT PAGE - Tonya Maxwell and Bryan Alexan­der USA TO­DAY Net­work

CHAR­LOTTE Against a back­drop of five days of protests, Char­lotte’s po­lice chief re­versed his po­si­tion Satur­day and de­cided to im­me­di­ately re­lease video footage of the fa­tal shoot­ing Tues­day of Keith La­mont Scott.

The dash­board cam­era from an ar­riv­ing po­lice car shows of­fi­cers sur­round­ing Scott’s car. Scott exits and steps back­ward away from his car at the 48-sec­ond mark in the video, as of­fi­cers re­peat­edly yell, “Drop the gun.”

At the 54-sec­ond mark, shots are fired and Scott falls to the ground, as of­fi­cers sur­round Scott out of dash­board-cam­era range. At the 1:31 mark, an of­fi­cer an­nounces over the ra­dio, “We got shots fired. One sus­pect down.”

The video ends af­ter 2 min­utes, 10 sec­onds.

The shaky body cam video is 1 minute, 8 sec­onds in length, show­ing an of­fi­cer cir­cling Scott’s car. The picture picks up on Scott on the ground at 26 sec­onds as an of­fi­cer yells for hand­cuffs. Scott’s hand­cuffed hands can be seen with blood and the sound of painful moan­ing can be heard.

An of­fi­cer at­tend­ing asks for med­i­cal equip­ment and says, “We need to hold the wound.” The video then stops.

The po­lice re­port stated that two plain-clothes of­fi­cers were sit­ting in their un­marked po­lice car pre­par­ing to serve an ar­rest war­rant when Scott pulled up in his white SUV. The of­fi­cers said Scott rolled what they be­lieved to be a mar­i­juana “blunt.” A short time later, an of­fi­cer ob­served Scott hold a gun up.

“Due to the com­bi­na­tion of il­le­gal drugs and the gun Mr. Scott had in his pos­ses­sion, of­fi­cers de­cided to take en­force­ment ac­tion for pub­lic safety con­cerns,” the re­port states. Of­fi­cers de­parted “to out­fit them­selves with marked duty vests and equip­ment that would clearly iden­tify them as po­lice of­fi­cers.”

“The of­fi­cers im­me­di­ately iden­ti­fied them­selves as po­lice of-

“Do those ac­tions, do those pre­cious sec­onds, jus­tify this shoot­ing?” Justin Bam­berg, one of the at­tor­neys for the Scott fam­ily

fi­cers and gave clear, loud and re­peated ver­bal com­mands to drop the gun,” the re­port states. Scott re­peat­edly ig­nored those com­mands, even af­ter leav­ing the car.

Of­fi­cer Brent­ley Vin­son, the of­fi­cer who fa­tally shot Scott, “per­ceived Mr. Scott’s ac­tions and move­ments as an im­mi­nent phys­i­cal threat to him­self and the other of­fi­cers” and fired his ser­vice weapon, the re­port stated.

Justin Bam­berg, one of the lawyers for the Scott fam­ily, said that many ques­tions need to be an­swered.

“Do those ac­tions, do those pre­cious sec­onds, jus­tify this shoot­ing? That is the most im­por­tant ques­tion,” said Bam­berg.

Au­thor­i­ties pre­vi­ously de­clined to re­lease the footage, ar­gu­ing it could jeop­ar­dize the in­tegrity of the in­ves­ti­ga­tion of the shoot­ing.


A still im­age taken from an of­fi­cer’s body cam video shows Keith La­mont Scott ly­ing on the ground Tues­day in Char­lotte.

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