Suspect Was Shot and Killed While Being Served a Warrant for Arrest.
On April 21st, 2021, Andrew Brown Jr. was shot and killed by police officers who were attempting to serve a drug search and arrest warrant. Police and SWAT went to his home in Elizabeth City, North Carolina, to serve the warrant.
Brown was a convicted felon, had a history of criminal drug charges, and a history of resisting arrest. The SWAT team was deployed because of his criminal record that is over 180 pages long.
Brown was shot five times, according to an autopsy released by Brown’s family. The Associated Press reported, “The family’s lawyers also put out a copy of Brown’s death certificate, which states the cause of death was a “penetrating gunshot wound of the head.”
Andrew Womble, the District Attorney, stated that the bodycam footage showed Brown’s car making contact with officers. “As it backs up, it does make contact with law enforcement officers,” Womble said, adding that the car stops again. “The next movement of the car is forward. It is in the direction of law enforcement and makes contact with law enforcement. It is then and only then that you hear shots.”
Family members, the media, and Sheriff Tommy Wooten all called for the release of the body cam footage. North Carolina state law requires that a court order is needed to release footage, as it is not considered public record. Pasquotank County Fact-checking website states, “On 4/26/21 the County Attorney officially asked the Court to release the video to the family and ultimately the public. Sheriff Wooten was disappointed that the judge denied his request but respects the judge’s ruling. ”
Judge Foster, who spent hours reviewing the tape, made the decision to halt the release of the footage for30-45 days. Foster said he is doing this, “To allow completion of any investigation being undertaken” by the State Bureau of Investigation (SBI) and the local prosecutor.
According to The Daily Wire, “The FBI Charlotte Field Office has opened a federal civil rights investigation into the police-involved shooting death of Andrew Brown Jr.,… Agents will work closely with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina and the Civil Rights Division at the Department of Justice to determine whether federal laws were violated.”
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