It’s been a week of unrest for the State of North Carolina. From gas shortages, to flooding and ending with rioting turned to more peaceful protests over the shooting of Keith Lamont Scott- it’s safe to say that all eyes are on the TarHeel State, and most specifically, Charlotte.
Tensions are high after the shooting of Scott; with two very stark accounts of what happened. What we do know for sure- confirmed by police is that while officers were attempted to issue a warrant to someone OTHER than Scott. This coupled with the fact that Scott was indeed shot and killed are the only FACTS that most can agree on.
According to police, Scott was uncooperative, didn’t listen to commands and had a gun. According to eye witnesses, Scott was in his truck reading a book and waiting for his son to come home from school- with no gun.
Eye Witness Account
Recently, Charlotte PD has decided to release the video footage that was recovered from dashcam and body cams. Prior to today, Chief of Police Kerr Putney maintained that he had no plans to release the video in an effort to let the investigation play out with integrity before being tried in the court of public opinion.
Riots & ProtestsOn Wednesday night, the streets of uptown Charlotte were filled with angry rioters and looting, as a reaction to what many felt was the unjust killing of an unarmed man. In fact, Scott’s killing was the second similar incident in as many days. In Tulsa,OK an altercation between Tulsa PD and Terence Crutcher left him dead. Since investigating, Officer Better Shelby was charged with First Degree Manslaughter and is out on bond.
While very different circumstances, the death of Terence Crutcher and the outrage that followed definitely played a role in the initial reaction to the killing of Scott. It felt all too déjà-vu like from July 2016, when Alton Sterling was killed, followed closely by Philando Castile.
It’s interesting to note this story, that seems to point out that most of the rioters were NOT from Charlotte.
To make matters worse, protester Justin Carr was killed Wednesday night. Again, accounts are very different depending with whom you are speaking. Some protesters insist that he was shot by police and police insist it was a protestor. Currently, they’ve arrested Rayquan Borum in the death of Justin Carr.
On Thursday and Friday nights, however the protests were peaceful. The Mayor of Charlotte invoked a curfew for the city, but since the protests were peaceful police and National Guard did not enforce it.
Free Hugs:The activist Ken Nwadike, founder of Free Hugs Project was present during peaceful protests in an effort to build a gap between police and civilians.
As small bit of positivity in what has been a devastating week for the Queen City.