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Charlotte Area

Council Members Get Earful From Residents Upset Over Fatal Police Shooting

Thunderstorms doused demonstrations uptown Monday night but many residents upset over the fatal shooting of Keith Lamont Scott last week by a CMPD officer dressed down city officials at last night’s City Council meeting. They called for the resignations of the mayor, council members and chief of police.

Credit Gwendolyn Glenn / WFAE News
Mayor Jennifer Roberts talks to a resident after a public hearing on the fatal police shooting of an African-American man last week.

People of all ages and races spoke at the meeting—some in tears, some yelling and some calmly calling for major changes in how the city and police department operate. 

The meeting was packed and a bit disruptive at times, especially when a resident praised Police Chief Kerr Putney. People chanted loudly, drowning out speakers at times and were passionate about what they see as injustices in the city. Many said they were frustrated because they felt city officials are out of touch with the black community. 

With raised fists in the air, some held signs saying Black Lives Matter. Most said they were frustrated over the Scott investigation and didn't trust CMPD. A few threatened to bring their protests to the homes of city council members and the mayor. They accused city officials of not caring about the pain Charlotte’s people of color feel.

Councilman Al Austin said he’s cried for the city, Scott’s family and Justin Carr’s who was shot during the protest. He and John Autry said it’s time out for task forces but action. Mayor Pro Tem Vie Lyles agreed .

Councilman Gregg Phipps was booed when said the investigation of the shooting needs to take its course as was Ed Driggs when he said they have to continue to support the chief and CMPD. 

Mayor Jennifer Roberts said she hears the community’s cries for change and transparency and that it is time for the city to address the issues they raised with resources. She says she’s also asked the U.S. Justice Department to monitor the Scott shooting investigation and review the city procedures to help identify areas that need to be changed.