Charlotte officials: ‘Timing’ the determining factor for public release of Keith Scott video

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP/WNCN) – Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts and Charlotte Police Chief Kerr Putney held another press conference Friday morning to address the third night of protests across the city over the death of Keith Lamont Scott, who was shot by a police officer Tuesday.



“Last night was what a lawful demonstration looks like. I appreciate the efforts of all of our law enforcement officers,” Roberts said at the start of the press conference.

She said she was on the streets last night to observe the protests and was “Grateful to see people voicing their opinions peacefully.” She also thanked the officers for demonstrating professionalism and said she was pleased to see how officers and demonstrators interacted with each other.

Although there was no repeat of the violence that marred the first two nights of protests in the city, Roberts said the midnight curfew will remain in effect, calling it “a tool that allows us to adjust enforcement.”

All restaurants and bars will be required to shut down at midnight.

One protester, Justin Carr, 26, was shot Wednesday night during a violent night of protests in the city. The violence is one of the main reasons officials implemented the curfew that runs from midnight-6 a.m.

Gov. Pat McCrory declared a state of emergency Wednesday night and state troopers and the National Guard were called up in an effort to maintain order.

Putney said that one officer suffered a minor hand injury Thursday night and that three people were arrested.

Police said at Friday’s press conference that they arrested a suspect in Carr’s death.

Rayquan Borum, 21, was charged with murder in connection with Carr’s shooting death. He was arrested Friday morning, authorities said.

Putney provided few other details about the arrest or Borum but said that video led investigators to the shooter.

Roberts and Putney also addressed the video of the deadly shooting that Scott’s family, attorneys and the mayor watched Thursday evening.

Putney said there is at least one video from a body camera and one other video from a dashboard camera that captured Scott’s death.

The chief continued Friday to refuse to release the video, which could resolve wildly different accounts of the shooting of the 43-year-old.

Police have said Scott refused repeated commands to drop a gun; residents said he was unarmed. An attorney for his family said it’s not clear from the video if he’s holding anything, including a gun.

Roberts said she does believe video of the shooting should be released publicly, but she says it’s a matter of when.

“I do believe the video should be released. The question is on the timing,” she said Friday. Putney echoed her remarks, saying the video’s release is “a matter of when, it’s a matter of sequence.”

Attorney General Roy Cooper also called for the release of the video on Friday in a statement sent to the press.

It has been a difficult 72 hours for Charlotte. Yesterday, I met and spoke with Mayor Roberts, faith and community leaders, law enforcement and national guard officials in Charlotte and I am deeply grateful for all the work they are doing to keep people and property safe. The question this morning is where do we go from here?

We must continue in the pursuit of the truth while also continuing the important work of bringing our communities and law enforcement together to build trust and safety for all. One step toward meeting both goals is for the videos in this case to be released to the public.

Transparency between the community and our law enforcement breaks down barriers and brings progress. As Attorney General I have witnessed first hand the honorable work that our officers do everyday and I am grateful for their hard work and sacrifice. I also know that many in our community feel disproportionately targeted and yearn to be heard and respected. Everyone is safer when there is mutual respect between law enforcement and our communities and working for that mutual respect is critical.

Putney said that Friday’s news conference would be his last concerning the shooting because he cannot release more information now that his department is no longer leading the investigation. The investigation has been taken over by the State Bureau of Investigation.

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