After a two-month-long investigation, Mecklenburg County District Attorney Andrew Murray and a total of 15 prosecutors unanimously agreed that Charlotte-Mecklenburg police Officer Brentley Vinson was “justified” in shooting Keith Lamont Scott to death in an apartment complex parking lot, CNN reports.
A biggest reason for the exoneration of Vinson was Scott’s alleged possession of a handgun. However, many, including his family, denied the presence of a gun at the scene.
In his hour-long announcement, the district attorney said that “all the credible evidence” led to the conclusion that Scott was armed. He said Scott’s DNA was on the grip of a gun found at the scene and at least three officers reported seeing Scott holding a gun before he was shot. However, the police dash cam never shows Scott holding a firearm.
After the decision to not charge an officer in the shooting, protesters took to the streets of downtown Charlotte, NC today in the shooting death of yet another black man at the hands of a police officer.
— newsAnglr US (@usanglr) September 26, 2016
— Taresh M. Moore (@TareshMonchel) December 1, 2016
— Justine Miller (@JustineIMiller) December 1, 2016
It all started when police say they were looking for a person with an outstanding warrant at an apartment complex. When police arrived on the scene, Scott, 43, exited a vehicle. Police say that he was holding a gun.
Scott’s widow recorded the moments leading up to the shooting with her camera phone. And after a public outcry, the police dashcam video of the incident was released in October. The video shows an officer in plain clothes with his weapon drawn on Scott as Scott exits an SUV and begins walking backward. Vinson then open fire on Scott, shooting him four times.
Video taken by