The Media Has Moved On, Questions Linger About Charlotte Shooting

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Amber Randall Civil Rights Reporter
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The media seems to have moved on from the Charlotte shooting, though questions still linger about the circumstances of Keith Lamont Scott’s death.

Black officer Brentley Vinson shot Scott, a black man, Sept. 20 when officers were trying to serve a warrant for someone else. Police alleged that Scott was armed and posed a threat to them, while Scott’s family maintained that he held a book in his hands.

The media devoted a week to the shooting and the subsequent riots that rocked Charlotte in the days after Scott’s death.

Most major outlets devote little coverage now, even as questions surround whether Scott was armed or not and his potentially violent past.

1.) Was Scott armed at the time of the shooting?

The body camera footage, dash camera footage and cell phone video footage released to the public  do not definitively show whether Scott carried a gun or not.

Rakeyia Scott, Scott’s wife, released cellphone video footage that she recorded from the scene of the shooting. While the video does not show whether Scott was armed, Rakeyia is heard telling officers that Scott was not armed and that he suffered from a traumatic brain injury.

Meanwhile, officers can be heard shouting Scott to drop his weapon.

Police also released footage from the shooting, none of which offers conclusive evidence as to whether Scott was armed or not.

One set of video footage shows Scott backing away slowly with his hands at his sides and then being hit as officers fire at him four times. In the footage, police shout multiple times, “Drop the gun!” From one vantage point, an officer can be seen pointing a gun at Scott’s car.

The videos do not show if Scott is armed or not.

Other footage released shows the aftermath of the shooting. The footage shows officers placing Scott in handcuffs and then trying to save him from dying.

“What’s your name, big man?” an officer asks. One officer can be heard saying to another officer “to come watch this gun.” The footage does not show Scott holding a gun.

2.) Scott’s own potentially violent history 

Scott also had a protective order filed against him by his wife. Rakeyia alleged that Scott hit her eight-year-old son with his fists and kicked her. She also said that Scott was a danger to law enforcement because he owned a 9-mm. handgun.

She claimed that he owned a handgun without a permit.

She later withdrew the order 11 days after, claiming that he is no longer a danger to the family.

Scott also was indicted for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and for trying to escape arrest with a vehicle in 2003 after he allegedly shot a man. He pleaded no contest and was sentenced to more than 8 years for it.

3.) The gun found at the scene of the shooting

The gun found at the scene of the shooting had Scott’s DNA and blood on it, according to sources.

Sources also told a local news station that the gun had been stolen from a residential break-in. The man accused of stealing it went on record to say that he sold it to Scott, sources said.

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