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Protests Erupt in Charlotte over Police Killing of Black Father

HeadlineSep 21, 2016

Charlotte, North Carolina, was rocked by protests overnight, after hundreds took to the street and blocked Interstate 85 to protest the fatal police shooting of 43-year-old African American Keith Lamont Scott on Tuesday. Video footage shows protesters blocking the highway, where fires were lit. Police in riot gear responded by throwing tear gas at the crowds. Police say about a dozen officers were hurt during the conflict. Protesters were also injured. Keith Lamont Scott was shot and killed around 4 p.m. after police arrived to serve an arrest warrant for another person at Scott’s housing complex. The accounts of the shooting diverge sharply. While the police claim they first tased and then shot Scott because he was armed and “posed an imminent deadly threat,” Scott’s family says he was not armed—except with a book in hand. They say he had been sitting in his car, waiting to pick up his son after school. This is Scott’s daughter speaking in a Facebook live video recorded at the scene of the shooting.

Lyric Scott: “What are they over there doing? Shot my [bleep] daddy for being black. You little [bleep]. Shot my daddy for being black. And look, and they’re just standing there, because they—right? He’s [bleep] disabled! How the [bleep] he going to shoot y’all? He didn’t got no [bleep] gun.”

The officer who shot Scott was also black; police identified him as Brentley Vinson, who has been placed on administrative leave. Three years ago, police in Charlotte shot and killed Jonathan Ferrell, an unarmed African-American college student who was seeking help after a car crash in 2013. Officer Randall Kerrick fired 12 bullets at Ferrell. Officer Kerrick was tried and acquitted of voluntary manslaughter last year.

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