Justin Carr, who was shot during protest Wednesday, has died
NEW: Mayor tells CNN she is leaning toward releasing videos
Relatives of Keith Lamont Scott, after watching two police videos, said they couldn’t say what was in his hands when he was shot and killed by a Charlotte police officer.
“It is impossible to discern from the videos what, if anything, Mr. Scott is holding in his hands,” attorney Justin Bamberg said.
The family wants police to immediately release the videos to the public, Bamberg said.
But Charlotte-Mecklenberg police Chief Kerr Putney told reporters earlier Thursday that he’s not going to do that because he doesn’t want to jeopardize the investigation.
Asked whether there was a time at which the public could expect to see it, Putney said there should be no such expectation.
“Transparency’s in the eye of the beholder,” he said. “If you think we should display a victim’s worst day for public consumption, that is not the transparency I’m speaking of.”
Putney later told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer the decision wouldn’t be his to make much longer anyway, as the investigation was being turned over to North Carolina’s State Bureau of Investigation.
Putney said video does not provide “definitive visual evidence” that Scott pointed a gun at police officers, including Brentley Vinson, who shot Scott. But other evidence and witness accounts support the police narrative that officers opened fire only after Scott refused to drop his weapon, he said.
The family says the video shows Scott acting calmly and non-aggressively on Tuesday. “When he was shot and killed, Mr. Scott’s hands were by his side and he was slowly walking backwards,” Bamberg said.
Scott didn’t own a gun or habitually carry a gun, the family has told their attorneys, Bamberg said. Scott’s family has said he was reading a book in his vehicle when officers approached.
Mayor Jennifer Roberts also watched the videos.
“It is not a very clear picture, and the gun in question is a small gun and it was not easy to see with the way the motion was happening,” she told “Anderson Cooper 360.”
The mayor said she is leaning toward releasing the footage to the public, but must remain mindful of the ongoing investigations into Scott’s shooting.
Shooting victim dies
The man shot outside Charlotte’s Omni Hotel during Wednesday night’s violent protests over Scott’s death has died, police public information officer Robert Tufano told CNN.
The victim was identified as Justin Carr, 26, from Charlotte.
Carr was discovered at the Omni Hotel uptown, and because the crowd was too thick for paramedics to access the scene, he had to be evacuated by a SWAT armored personnel carrier, the chief said. Authorities have said he was shot by another civilian.
Fears of violent protests
After violent protests raged for the second night in Charlotte, residents were uneasy Thursday as a state of emergency was in effect and National Guard troops arrived.
On Wednesday, police arrested 44 people at the protests, one of which turned into a riot. People smashed windows, looted storefronts and threw objects at others and police.
Roberts has signed an order enacting a curfew for the city, an aide told CNN. The curfew goes into effect at midnight and extends until 6 a.m. ET.
“The curfew will be in effect each day until the end of the State of Emergency is declared or until the official proclamation is revoked,” the city tweeted.
Several hundred people gathered Thursday night on streets in uptown Charlotte; the demonstrations appeared largely peaceful.
Putney used a news conference to send a message to those who would continue looting and destroying property in the city, which also resulted in injuries to nine civilians and five police officers.
Two of the officers suffered minor eye injuries, while three others had heat-related ailments.
Wednesday’s protests began peacefully, the chief said, but about 8 p.m. demonstrators began jumping on cars and damaging property at EpiCentre, an entertainment hub uptown. Police were forced to deploy tear gas, he said, and as the night went on, protesters shut down Interstate 277 and the city’s light rail was halted just before midnight, due to the demonstrations, Putney said.
The violence and vandalism carried on until roughly 3 a.m., he said. The arrests ran the gamut from failing to disperse to assault to breaking and entering, and more arrests may come as authorities review video footage of the protests, he said.
Those looking to repeat the tumult will do so under an increased police presence Thursday night. There will be officers on foot and bike patrol, as well as dirt bikes. Helicopters will patrol the streets from above, and police will have more than 1,000 cameras to help monitor the city, Putney said.