The black North Carolina officer who shot Keith Lamont Scott, another black man, acted lawfully in the shooting, according to a Wednesday announcement.
District Attorney Andrew Murray announced the decision concerning Officer Brentley Vinson during a press conference Wednesday morning.
“It is my opinion that Mr. Vinson acted lawfully,” Murray said. His office did not determine whether Vinson followed police department protocol, but determined if he acted lawfully and in self-defense. Fifteen career prosecutors reviewed the shooting and all came to the same recommendation, Murray said.
Murray showed the press a still shot from a surveillance video, depicting Scott walking into a convenience store minutes before the shooting. The video showed a bulge in Scott’s ankle that is consistent with the holster and gun officers later found at the scene.
Vinson fatally shot Scott in September after Scott repeatedly ignored commands from officers to drop his gun. (RELATED:Police Chief: Black Man Told Multiple Times To Drop Gun Before Getting Shot)
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Kerr Putney said that at the time Vinson believed Scott posed an imminent threat to the officers. Murray corroborated this account during the press conference, saying that officers can be heard in audio telling Scott 10 times to drop his weapon.
Murray explained “all available and credible evidence” points to the fact that Scott was armed at the time.
The gun found at the scene had Scott’s DNA on the grip and slide of the gun.
Charlotte was rocked by nights of violent riots after Vinson shot Scott. Rioters even tried to set a reporter on fire, and a man later died from a gunshot wound he received during the riots. (RELATED: Here’s How Charlotte Rioters Expressed Their ‘Frustrations’)
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