Increased police presence at Charlotte NFL game

A day after the family of Keith Lamont Scott - the Black man shot and killed by Charlotte, North Carolina police last week - released cell phone footage of the incident, Charlotte officials, amid pressure from protestors and activist, released photographic and video evidence from body and dashboard cameras.

Police also released photos of a handgun and holster they said were recovered from the scene, as well as marijuana.

In one of the police videos, a dashboard-mounted camera from a squad auto showed Scott exiting his vehicle and then backing away from it. Police shout to him to drop a gun, but it is not clear that Scott is holding anything. It briefly shows Scott standing outside his vehicle before he is shot, but it is not clear whether he has something in his hand.

Scott gets out, starts walking backward, and then four shots ring out.

But police can be heard repeatedly shouting "Drop the gun!" at the 43-year-old Scott, who died from his wounds Tuesday as his wife stood nearby.

Officers say Scott pointed a gun at them; Scott's family has disputed that he was armed and that, if he was, that he raised the weapon.

Before the release of the footage, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Kerr Putney acknowledged that the videos themselves were "insufficient" to prove that Scott held a gun. "People can interpret anything they want based on one piece of evidence, and I can tell you, I suspect they will based on the video footage", Putney said.

On the CMPD video, Scott is surrounded by officers within seconds of exiting his vehicle.

Still, Putney has previously said that the video, when considered with the rest of the evidence, supports the police account. His wife's voice is audible as she yells both at him and at officers.

"What we know and what you should know about him is that he was an American citizen who deserved better", he said. Putney said nine people were injured during the protest and 44 people arrested after stores were looted, windows broken and reporters threatened.

But there's also something missing from the videos and that's a clear image of Scott holding the gun.

The protesters chanted along to the beat of a brass band, and then were drowned out by noise from inside the stadium.

The next two nights of protests were free of property damage and violence, with organisers stressing a message of peace at the end of the week. Officer Vinson perceived Scott's actions and movements as an imminent physical threat to himself and the other officers, and fired his issued service weapon, striking Scott.... It was also determined that the gun Mr. Scott possessed was loaded at the time of the encounter with the officers. The New York Times reports that the police did not say where they later found the gun.

The city has been on edge ever since Scott's shooting death.

Putney said that he has no plans to charge any of the officers involved in the fatal shooting with a crime but left open the possibility that charges could come from the state investigation.

"What we already know is that far too many people of color are victims of wrongful targeting and excessive use of force by law enforcement officers across the country", Anderson said in a statement. Restaurants and businesses in the city popular uptown Epicentre closed early, by 4 p.m.in most cases, most of the week.

Amid anxiety and unease over the shooting of Scott, demonstrations in Charlotte have gone from violent to peaceful, although demands to see the police video remained a chief concern of protesters.

  • Archie Newman