The dash cam and body cam footage of the shooting of Keith Lamont Scott has been released and it’s pretty clear why Chief Putney didn’t want to release it. It shows a confused-looking Scott exit his truck, he looks at the cops around him, and apparently confused about what he is supposed to be doing (remember the video with his wife shouting at the police officers “he has TBI! he has TBI!” i.e traumatic brain injury, which reduces the ability to process information) he turns his back to the officers. He may have been holding something in his hand, it’s hard to tell from the video, but if so, he was not pointing it at the officers in any way, both of his arms were relaxed, not tensed, and his hands were by his sides. And then one officer shoots him.
Yet Chief Putney still continues to defend the conduct of his officers, who quite clearly from the videos shot someone who was not threatening them in any way, who shot someone who looked confused and was moving slowly, saying that the “totality of the evidence” (i.e., the testi-lying of his officers) says it was a good shoot.
There will not be peace on the streets in Charlotte until their chief of police is fired and replaced with someone who doesn’t try to whitewash the death of a man. After looking at these videos I see no reason why Mr. Scott was shot, other than the fact that he was a black man, and we have cowards wearing blue uniforms who are scared of black men. Even if Mr. Scott had a gun in one hand (which is not evident from the video), it is quite clear that he was neither brandishing nor pointing a gun in a threatening manner, he wasn’t even facing the police officers and his hands were relaxed at his sides. Remember, North Carolina is an open carry state. It’s legal to hold a firearm in North Carolina as long as you aren’t pointing it at somebody or brandishing it in a threatening manner.
In short, viewing these videos, I see no reason why Mr. Scott was shot. Chief Putney needs to be fired, and someone put in charge who is more interested in defending the public than in defending an officer who made a bad choice. Because defending an officer who made a bad choice isn’t going to result in peace in Charlotte, no matter how photogenically black Chief Putney is.
Update: I just downloaded the video and put it through all the enhancements I could. The body cam footage is a mess, but I single stepped through the frames and there is one frame where you can see the shape of a gun clearly as it falls away from Mr. Scott after he is shot and jerks his hand upward to where he’d been shot. So yeah, he was holding a gun. He wasn’t pointing it at anybody but he definitely was holding a gun.
– Badtux the Video-watching Penguin