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UPDATE 2-Police in Charlotte, N. Carolina, Fatally Shoot Man They Say Was Armed

Tuesday, 20 Sep 2016 11:03 PM

(Updates with police identifying slain man, officer involved; protesters blocking road)

By Dan Whitcomb

Sept 20 (Reuters) - Police fatally shot a man in the parking lot of a Charlotte, North Carolina apartment complex on Tuesday after he got out of his car armed with a gun as officers approached him, authorities said.

Local media reported that after the shooting, relatives of the slain man confronted police at the scene and a crowd of several dozen people quickly gathered to protest.

WSCOC-TV said that demonstrators blocked a road leading to the apartment complex as police in riot gear stood by.

The incident came amid an intense ongoing national debate over the use of deadly force by police.

Officers from the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department were at an apartment complex searching for a suspect with an outstanding warrant shortly before 4 p.m. when they saw a man get out of his vehicle with a firearm, public affairs officer Keith Trietley said in a written statement.

"Officers observed the subject get back into the vehicle at which time they began to approach the subject. The subject got back out of the vehicle armed with a firearm and posed an imminent deadly threat to the officers who subsequently fired their weapon striking the subject," Trietley said.

The victim, identified by police as 43-year-old Keith Lamont Scott, was transported to Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, where he was pronounced dead, according to Trietley.

Police did not immediately say if Scott was the suspect they had originally sought at the apartment complex. WSOC-TV reported that he was not.

A man identified by WCNC-TV as the victim's brother told the station that the officer involved in the shooting was undercover and not wearing a uniform.

"I think he shot him four times, I'm not sure but he's dead," the man told WCNC. The station did not identify him by name.

Police recovered the gun that the subject was holding at the time of the shooting and witnesses were being interviewed, Trietley said.

The officer who shot Scott was identified as Bradley Vinson, who has been on the force since July 2014.

Trietley said the department's internal affairs bureau would conduct a separate investigation and that Vinson had been placed on administrative leave.

In August, a 29-year-old deaf driver from Charlotte was fatally shot by a North Carolina State Highway Patrol trooper during a traffic stop.

The state's top safety official has said that incident was being reviewed by the district attorney, the Highway Patrol and State Bureau of Investigation. (Reporting by Dan Whitcomb in Los Angeles; Editing by Leslie Adler and Peter Cooney)

© 2017 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

   
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