Keith Lamont Scott was fatally shot by a Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department officer Tuesday afternoon. According to the department, officers had gone to the apartment complex near the University of North Carolina campus when they came upon Scott, who was sitting in his car.
In a statement, the police said Scott got out of the car holding a gun, then got back inside. As officers approached, the statement said, Scott again got out of the car with gun in hand and “posed an imminent deadly threat to the officers who subsequently fired their weapon striking the subject.”
However, a woman identifying herself as Scott’s daughter said he was unarmed and reading a book in his car when police shot and killed him. She said he was simply parked and waiting for a school bus to drop of his son when he was killed.
Scott was taken to Carolinas Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead. Detectives said they recovered a firearm at the scene. Police also identified the officer who shot Scott as Brentley Vinton, who has been with the department since July 2014.
He has been placed on paid administrative leave pending an investigation standard procedure in officer-involved shootings.
Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts said in a tweet that the “community deserves answers and a full investigation will ensue. Will be reaching out to community leaders to work together.”
But the mayor’s words did not quell the anger in the streets.
A large crowd gathered near the scene of the shooting Tuesday night, and demonstrators were initially peaceful as some chanted “black lives matter” and “hands up, don’t shoot.”
Then the situation deteriorated.
According to news reports and posts on social media, after police arrived at the scene in riot gear, there were several confrontations with demonstrators, some of whom began smashing the windows of police cars. The officers responded by firing rubber bullets and tear gas into the crowd.
The running battle continued into the early morning hours, with protestors briefing shutting down a portion of Interstate-85. Police reportedly used flash grenades to break up the crowd and the highway was cleared before the morning rush hour.
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