Activists and politicians Thursday urged officials in Charlotte, North Carolina, to release the video of the officer-involved shooting of a black man that has triggered protests across the city. The demonstrations in Charlotte continued for the second day with protesters clashing with police over Keith Lamont Scott’s shooting.
“We need answers and we need justice, but neither will come through violence. We must work together to ensure the process is swift, just and transparent. That begins with actions like releasing the video and calling for transparency, accountability and collaboration,” Congresswoman Alma S. Adams said, in a statement posted on Facebook.
The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, or the NAACP, released a statement Thursday asking Charlotte officials to be transparent and release the video of the shooting. The group also urged the city to make any additional information public.
Following the shooting, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department said that Scott was considered a threat because he had a firearm with him when officers were looking for a different person with an outstanding warrant at an apartment complex. After approaching Scott in his car, officers told him to drop his handgun but he did not follow the orders, Police Chief Kerr Putney said, adding that black officer Brentley Vinson later shot Scott.
Putney said that Vinson was in plain clothes but wore the police department’s vest at the time of the incident and he did not have a body camera on him. However, three uniformed officers had cameras on them, the chief said. Officers are required to wear body cameras during patrol and the cameras must be kept on during an arrest, as per the department's policy. The dash cam footage is available and investigators are examining the video, according to Putney.
Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts said she planned to watch the video on Thursday.
On Wednesday, the American Civil Liberties Union of North Carolina urged the police to release any footage related to Scott’s shooting.
“We demand a full investigation into why yet another black person in the United States has died at the hands of a police officer,” Karen Anderson, executive director of the ACLU of North Carolina, said in a statement. “In the interest of transparency and accountability, and particularly in light of conflicting accounts about the shooting, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department should quickly release any and all footage it has of the events leading up to the shooting, as well as the shooting itself. The department should also explain why the officer who shot Mr. Scott was not wearing a body camera.”
Meanwhile, on Thursday, the police department tweeted saying that four of its officers were injured in the protests. None of the wounds are life-threatening, the department added.