Dramatic new footage of the fatal encounter between Keith Lamont Scott and Charlotte police filmed by his own wife has been released by his family.
The video, obtained by NBC News, shows the moments immediately leading up to Scott’s death as well as the aftermath.
Gunshots can be heard but his wife Rakeyia Scott appears to drop her phone at that moment, before regaining her composure and filming the aftermath of his death, with police searching his body.
Rakeyia, who apparently had come out of the apartment with a phone charger for her husband only to notice the scene, can be heard repeatedly saying: ‘Don’t shoot him, don’t shoot him’, claiming that he has ‘no weapon.’
‘He doesn’t have a gun, he has a TBI [traumatic brain injury], he’s not going to do anything to you guys, he just took his medicine.’
When he is shot, she screams at the cops: ‘Did you shoot him? He better not be f***ing dead, he better not be f***ing dead’.
Amazingly, she continues to film the scene, repeatedly saying: ‘I know he better live.’
In the newly obtained footage, Scott doesn’t appear to have a firearm near his person. This appears to contradict pictured that emerged on Thursday that appeared to show a gun at his feet. It is unclear when that photograph was taken.
A police source told WBTV that a gun reportedly found near Scott had his fingerprints, DNA and blood on it. It was also loaded.
Justin Bamberg, who is representing the Scott family along with Eduardo Curry, told the New York Times that the video did not prove whether the shooting was justified or not.
He said however that it offered ‘another vantage point’ of the incident.
Charles G Monnett, one of the attorneys for the Scott family said they decided to release the footage ‘in the name of truth and transparency’.
‘The family is still hopeful that the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department and city of Chicago will release all available video of the incident to the public so that people can draw their own conclusions about Keith’s death.
‘We encourage everyone to reserve judgment until all the facts are known. This is simply one step in our quest to find the truth for this family.’
Authorities in Charlotte have so far refused to release police bodycam footage of Scott being shot dead despite his family demanding it be made public.
Hillary Clinton, who has announced she will head to Charlotte on Sunday, has called on authorities to release it, saying: ‘We must ensure justice & work to bridge divides.’
The city’s police chief Kerr Putney said that he thought it would ‘inflame the situation’ if he were to make the footage of Keith Scott’s death available.
Mr Putney said that it would ‘fracture the trust’ of the community if the dash cam film were released without other evidence to put it into context.
But North Carolina’s Attorney General has called on officials to release the police video this week.
Scott was shot dead on Monday by police who were in the University City area of Charlotte looking for an unrelated suspect. It is unclear how exactly they initially began interacting with Scott.
Police claim that when they arrived, the officers ‘observed a subject, Mr Keith Lamont Scott, inside a vehicle in the apartment complex. The subject exited the vehicle armed with a handgun. Officers observed the subject get back into the vehicle at which time they began to approach the subject.’
They say Scott, a father-of-seven, disregarded repeated demands to drop his gun. Open carry is legal in North Carolina.
But his family and neighborhood residents insist he was holding a book, not a weapon, as he waited for his son to get off the school bus. His mother Vernita Scott Walker insists he was reading the Koran while waiting for his daughter.
Police say that he got out of his car with a gun and did not put it down despite repeated warnings to do so.
Mr Scott’s family have seen the police dash cam video of his shooting and after viewing it contradicted the police version of events.
In a statement they said that he was not aggressive and when he was shot his hands were by his sides and he was walking slowly backwards.
Scott’s family claim that he was sitting reading a book waiting for his son to get off the school bus. His mother claims he was reading the Koran.
An attorney for his family, who viewed the video Thursday, says it’s not clear from the video if he’s holding anything, including a gun.
Mr Putney said that people might think the video is a ‘panacea’ but that was not the case.
He said: ‘If I were to put it out indiscriminately and it doesn’t give you good context it could inflame the situation and make it even worse. it will exacerbate the backlash, it will increase the distrust.
‘That is where judgement, discernment and reasonableness have to come in. Let me tell you, I’m not a very patient person.
‘If I were putting it out on my time frame you would not have a whole case and you would damage the very trust you’re trying to build.
‘It’s not that I want to hide anything, it’s the I want to be more thoughtful and deliver the whole story’.
Mr Putney added that the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, an agency that is independent from the Charlotte police force, is now in charge of the inquiry into Mr Scott’s death.
Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts said that she had seen the video of Mr Scott’s death and that it was ‘inconclusive’.
She said she too wanted it released but did not want to ‘jeopardize the integrity of the investigation’.
She said: ‘When you’re still gathering eyewitness accounts…if you have already seen something on the internet or wherever it can cloud your memory.
‘It can alter what you think you saw. We want to have integrity. We want those eyewitness to tell us without their memory being led’.
Addressing the protests on Thursday night, Mr Putney said that they had dissipated on their own by 2am.
One police officer had minor injuries to his hand. Two were treated after being sprayed by a chemical by protesters.
One National Guard was treated for a minor injury and one civilian was taken to hospital for injuries not sustained during the protest.
Three people were arrested.
Mr Putney said that the gang which intelligence said that were coming to join the protests were coming from South Carolina, but did not provide more details.
Mr Putney said that he was ‘encouraged by the manner in which the First Amendment was exercised’ during Thursday night – even though the curfew was in place protesters were allowed to roam the streets.
He also said that he asked for a curfew to be enforced on Thursday night because of intelligence that an violent gang was on its way to join the protest. The curfew will remain in place for Friday night.
The third night of demonstrations in Charlotte over the police shooting of Scott was largely peaceful but protesters were cleared from Interstate 277 when they blocked it with a human chain.
Riot police used pepper spray on a dozen protesters and battered them with their shields.
North Carolina governor Pat McCrory had already declared a state of emergency in the city after violent looting in the Central Business District earlier in the week.
CHARLOTTE SHOOTING VIDEO: TRANSCRIPT OF RAKEYIA SCOTT’S HORRIFIED REACTION
Rakeyia Scott: Don’t shoot him, don’t shoot him, he has no weapon, he has no weapon, don’t shoot him.
Police: Don’t shoot. Drop the gun. Drop the f***ing gun.
Rakeyia: Don’t shoot him, don’t shoot him, he didn’t do anything.
Police: Drop the gun!
Rakeyia: He doesn’t have a gun, he has a TBI [traumatic brain injury]. He’s not going to do anything to you guys. He just took his medicine
Police: Drop the gun. Let me get a f***ing baton over here.
Rakeyia: Keith, don’t let them break the windows. Come on out the car.
Police: Drop the gun!
Rakeyia: Keith, don’t do it. Keith, get out the car. Keith, don’t you do it, don’t you do it. Keith! Keith! Keith! Don’t you do it!
Gunshots are heard
Rakeyia: Did you shoot him? Did you shoot him? Did you shoot him? He better not be f***ing dead. He better not be f***ing dead. I know that f***ing much. I know that much he better not be dead. I’m not gonna come near you [to police]. I’m going to record you though. He better be alive. You better be alive, how about that.
Yes we’re over here at 50… 50.. 9453 Lexington Court. These are the police officers that shot my husband and he better live. He better live because he didn’t do nothing to them.
Police: Is everybody good? Are you good?
Rakeyia: He good. Nobody… touch nobody, so they’re all good.
Police: You good?
Rakeyia: I know he better live. I know he better live. How about that, I’m not coming to you guys but he better live. He better live. Y’all hear this and you see this right? He better live. He better live. I swear he better live. Yep, he better live. He better f***ing live. He better f***ing live and I can’t even leave the damn site. I ain’t going nowhere, I’m staying in the same damn spot. The f***.
That’s ok, did y’all call the police? I mean did y’all call an ambulance?
SOURCE: Daily Mail
Daniel Bates and Chris Irvine