No Internal Discipline For Officer In Fatal Shooting of Keith Scott
The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department has determined that an officer followed proper procedures when he fatally shot Keith Lamont Scott last fall and will not be disciplined, according to documents the Observer obtained Friday.
Officer Brentley Vinson was justified in killing Scott during a confrontation outside a University City apartment complex Sept. 20, says a letter the department sent to Scott’s widow.
Police have said officers spotted Scott, 43, in a SUV with marijuana and a gun. Vinson told investigators he shot because he feared for his life and the lives of other officers on the scene.
Following Scott’s death, riots and street demonstrations roiled Charlotte, prompted dozens of arrests and pushed Gov. Pat McCrory to declare a state of emergency. Mecklenburg County District Attorney Andrew Murray previously ruled that the shooting was legally justified and that Vinson would not face criminal charges.
But protesters and some law enforcement experts question whether CMPD unnecessarily resorted to deadly force against a person with a traumatic brain injury that made it difficult for him to follow directions. They also argue that Scott was sitting alone in the SUV and did not appear to pose a threat to anyone before police approached him.