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Dublin: 3 °C Wednesday 13 November, 2019

Police injured after community protests the killing of a black man by officer

Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts appealed for calm.

Police fire tear gas into the crowd of protesters on Old Concord Road in Charlotte.
Police fire tear gas into the crowd of protesters on Old Concord Road in Charlotte.
Image: Ely Portillo/The Charlotte Observer via AP

TWELVE OFFICERS WERE injured during violent protests in a North Carolina city sparked by the fatal police shooting of an African-American, officials said.

Demonstrators gathered late last night near an apartment complex in Charlotte where the shooting occurred, carrying signs that read “Black Lives Matter” and chanting “No justice, no peace!” local television reported.

News reports said the man shot by the Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officer, identified as Keith Lamont Scott, was African-American, as was the officer who killed him.

News reports said an unspecified number of civilians were also hurt.

WSOC-TV reported that police donned riot gear and used tear gas as they tried to subdue the angry crowd, which authorities said attacked and damaged several police cars.

News reports said the officer involved in the shooting, Brentley Vinson, has been put on paid leave.

The television station reported that Vinson was among the officers searching for a suspect on an outstanding arrest warrant.

Police encountered Scott – who was not the person they were seeking – in a car parked at the building.

Officials said he had a firearm, which is not illegal under local law. A confrontation ensued and police, who said they felt threatened by Scott, opened fire and killed him. News reports gave his age as 43.

The dead man’s relatives, interviewed by local media, said he was not carrying a gun but instead was holding a book in his hands at the time he was gunned down.

Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts appealed for calm.

“The community deserves answers and full investigation will ensue,” she wrote on Twitter.

“Will be reaching out to community leaders to work together.”

© AFP 2016

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