Charlotte: Keith Scott's family views video of killing

Family of black man killed by police says it is impossible to discern from the videos whether Keith Scott carried a gun.

    Protesters call for videos of the shooting to be made public [Mike Blake/Reuters]
    Protesters call for videos of the shooting to be made public [Mike Blake/Reuters]

    The family of the black man whose shooting death by police in Charlotte, North Carolina, triggered violent protests has viewed a video of the episode, as pressure is growing for police to make the footage public.

    Keith Scott was killed on Tuesday by a police officer as part of a search for another man. While police say the officer who killed Scott was black, witnesses say the officer was white.

    Police contend that Scott, 43, was carrying a gun when he approached officers and ignored repeated orders to drop it. His family previously said he was holding a book, not a firearm.

    After the family had been allowed to see two police videos of the shooting, their lawyer said it was unclear if Scott was holding a gun when killed.

    Scott's family called on police to immediately release the videos that they saw on Thursday.

    But Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Kerr Putney told reporters that he is not going to make the video public because he does not want to jeopardise the investigation.

    READ MORE: When do US police use body cameras?

    Scott's death is the latest to stir passions in the United States over the police use of deadly force against black men.

    The family's viewing of the video came on the same day that a white police officer in Tulsa, Oklahoma, was charged with first-degree manslaughter in the fatal shooting of an unarmed black man whose car had broken down and blocked a road.

    In Charlotte, Scott's family said it still had "more questions than answers" after watching two police body camera videos of the officer shooting him dead in the car park of an apartment complex.

    "While police did give him several commands, he did not aggressively approach them or raise his hands at members of law enforcement at any time," Justin Bamberg, a lawyer for the family, said in the statement.

    "It is impossible to discern from the videos what, if anything, Mr Scott is holding in his hands," the statement said, adding that Scott's hands were by his sides and he was slowly walking backwards.

    Scott's killing prompted two nights of riots in Charlotte. Residents marched again on Thursday night in a peaceful protest.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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