Riots Erupt in Charlotte After Police Killing of Keith Lamont Scott


UPDATE 9/22/16 8:01 PM EST:

The protestor that was injured and in critical condition has died from their injuries. Authorities have not yet released the individual’s name.

UPDATE 9/22/16: After a second night of riots one protestor remains in critical condition after being shot in the head. It is still unclear whether the shot came from an officer or another civilian.

Initially the city reported that the unnamed protestor was deceased, but later updated his condition to “critical.”

Mainstream media outlets are reporting that the individual was shot by another civilian, but several people that were at the protests posted pictures on social media and claim that it was officers firing rubber bullets.

Four police officers received non-life threatening injuries.

In response to the violence, North Carolina Governor has declared a state of emergency and has deployed both the National Guard and State Highway Patrol.

The NAACP, who will be sending representatives to talk with the family of Scott as well as other members of the community, issued the following statement:

Meanwhile, protestors shut down I-277 and protested outside of police headquarters:


Riots erupted last night during ongoing protests of the killing of 43-year-old Keith Lamont Scott by city police.

Protestors clashed with riot police, resulting in the shut down of a major highway in Charlotte, North Carolina, tear gas being used on the protestors, and 16 officers injured.

Scott was shot and killed by city police on Tuesday afternoon. Plainclothes officers arrived at a nearby apartment complex to serve a warrant on a completely unrelated matter. There are wildly different accounts of the situation from there.

According to police, Scott exited his vehicle, which was parked at The Village at College Downs complex near the University of North Carolina, holding a handgun. He returned to the car, but exited again with the gun when officers approached him. Kerr Putney, police chief of Charlotte-Mecklenburg County Police Department says that “The officers gave loud, clear, verbal commands which were also heard by many of the witnesses” to which Scott did not respond, resulting in one officer opening fire.

Officer Brentley Vinson, the one responsible for shooting and killing Scott, is a black police officer. Scott was also black. Putney says that he doesn’t know if Scott actually pointed a weapon at the officers.

However, Scott’s family claims that the events are strikingly different from what the police have reported. According to his family, Scott was a disabled man and was unarmed. The object in question was a book he was reading as he waited for his son’s school bus to arrive.

Protestors began flooding the streets shortly after the shooting close to the University of North Carolina-Charlotte campus. After night fell things began to get out of hand, as several protestors climbed police vehicles, prompting riot police to arrive on scene.

Despite the violence, many of the protestors strove to remain peaceful, emotionally pleading with police for change:

Scott is the most recent black male to be shot and killed by police. Terence Crutcher, an unarmed father of four, was shot and killed by police in Tulsa, Oklahoma last week. A few days before that officers in Columbus, Ohio, shot and killed Tyre King, a 13-year-old that was playing with a BB gun.


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Alexandra Jacobo is a dedicated progressive writer, activist, and mother with a deep-rooted passion for social justice and political engagement. Her journey into political activism began in 2011 at Zuccotti Park, where she supported the Occupy movement by distributing blankets to occupiers, marking the start of her earnest commitment to progressive causes. Driven by a desire to educate and inspire, Alexandra focuses her writing on a range of progressive issues, aiming to foster positive change both domestically and internationally. Her work is characterized by a strong commitment to community empowerment and a belief in the power of informed public action. As a mother, Alexandra brings a unique and personal perspective to her activism, understanding the importance of shaping a better world for future generations. Her writing not only highlights the challenges we face but also champions the potential for collective action to create a more equitable and sustainable world.