Tags: Law Enforcement | US | police | shooting | protests

Troops, Extra Police in Charlotte to Prevent More Clashes

Image: Troops, Extra Police in Charlotte to Prevent More Clashes

 (AP Photo)

By    |   Thursday, 22 Sep 2016 10:41 PM

Protests stretched into a third day in Charlotte on Thursday — but demonstrators faced a midnight curfew after National Guard and State Highway Patrol officers took up positions after two days of violence sparked by the fatal shooting an African-American man by police.

"They're stationed in front of our buildings," Mayor Jennifer Roberts told Anderson Cooper on CNN after signing a curfew that ends at 6 a.m. Friday. "We want to make sure there's no more broken glass.

"We want to make sure that our businesses feel safe, that our property is safe," she added. "That does free up our police officers to be out in the crowds, to be in the street, walking and patrolling — and making sure we're keeping our streets safe."

Republican Gov. Pat McCrory declared a state of emergency after violent protests Wednesday led to 44 arrests — and with five officers and nine civilians being injured.

A 26-year-old protester, Justin Carr, who was shot in the head about 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, died Thursday. Police said he was not shot by a police officer.

The demonstrations follow Tuesday's fatal shooting death of Keith Lamont Scott, 43, in the parking lot of an apartment complex. He was shot by Officer Brentley Vinson, 26, an African American who joined the force in December 2014.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Kerr Putney has said Scott had a handgun, while others claim he was holding a book. A gun was found at the scene, according to Putney.

"The officer perceived his failure to comply with commands, failure to drop the weapon and facing the officers as an imminent threat," Putney told Megyn Kelly on Fox News. "That is what caused everything else to transpire."

He told Wolf Blitzer on CNN earlier Thursday the video he had viewed did not definitely show Scott with a gun nor pointing a weapon at police.

Putney said he would not release the footage because "I have to do what I can to protect the integrity of the investigation," but later told Kelly only the independent State Bureau of Investigation now had the authority to do so.

Scott's family viewed the video with their attorneys on Thursday afternoon.

"What I saw in the video is that he did not point a gun," Justin Bamberg, an attorney for the family, told CNN's Cooper. "There's no question about that."

Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced that the Justice Department was sending staffers from its Community Relations Service to Charlotte.

In contrast with the previous two nights, Thursday's protests were generally peaceful, as hundreds of protesters marched through the heart of Charlotte's business district, known as Uptown.

They stopped for about 15 minutes to chant and block an intersection near Bank of America's headquarters. They moved on as police and members of the National Guard monitored them.

The demonstration began about 7:30 p.m. at a neighborhood park.

At one point, about 400 protesters converged on the local courthouse, but were rebuffed by authorities.

Demonstrators carried signs — "End police terror," one said — before police declared the demonstration and unlawful assembly and ordered them to leave the area.

Some protesters left, but others remained and continued to march peacefully.

The Charlotte unrest provided strong fodder for the presidential candidates.

Mayor Roberts told Cooper that Democrat Hillary Clinton called her and "wanted to let me know that she is thinking about Charlotte."

Republican Donald Trump called for an end to the violence and pledged to work with law enforcement to revive the nation's inner cities.

"The rioting in our streets is a threat to all peaceful citizens," he told a rally in Chester Township, Pa. "It must be ended and ended now."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Protests stretched into a third day in Charlotte on Thursday — but demonstrators faced a midnight curfew after National Guard and State Highway Patrol officers took up positions after two days of violence sparked by the fatal shooting an African-American man by police.
US, police, shooting, protests
613
2016-41-22
Thursday, 22 Sep 2016 10:41 PM
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