Prosecutors Decline to Charge Charlotte Police Officer Who Fatally Shot Keith Lamont Scott

Officer Brentley Vinson.

Charlotte police officer Brentley Vinson will not be prosecuted in the fatal shooting of Keith Lamont Scott, a 43-year-old black man who was killed near an apartment complex this September. His death set off days of protests — which occasionally turned violent — in Charlotte.

Mecklenburg County district attorney Andrew Murray said the shooting was justified and that Vinson, who is also black, “acted lawfully.” Officials had maintained that Scott was armed with a handgun, and had refused commands to drop the weapon at the time of the shooting. His family disputed this account, and said Scott was unarmed. Dashboard and body-camera footage released days after after the shooting didn’t provide conclusive evidence that Scott had a gun, or that he threatened officers.

The district attorney showed new surveillance footage — recorded from a convenience store before the September 20 shooting — at Wednesday’s press conference. He pointed out what appears to be the outline of a holster on Scott’s ankle, reports the Charlotte Post and Courier, which, Murray said, supported additional evidence that Scott had been carrying a weapon.

D.A. Declines to Charge Charlotte Cop Who Killed Scott