Following is a timeline of events that led to Charlotte’s violent overnight protests.
Tuesday 3:54 p.m.: According to CMPD, officers from the Metro Division Crime Reduction Unit are searching for a suspect with an outstanding warrant at The Village at College Downs. Officers see Keith Lamont Scott inside a vehicle in the apartment complex. Scott is not the person being sought by police. Police say Scott exited the vehicle with a firearm. Officers see Scott get back into the vehicle at which time they began to approach Scott. Police say Scott gets back out of the vehicle armed with a firearm and poses an imminent deadly threat to the officers, who shoot Scott. The officers request Medic and begin performing CPR.
Tuesday 5 p.m.: Unverified reports spread via social and broadcast media that the victim was a disabled man, holding a book, and he was shot four times by an officer in civilian clothes. A woman who is reportedly the victim’s daughter takes to Facebook Live to depict what was going on. A crowd of about 100 protesters show up at site of the shooting. #KeithLamontScott begins to trend on social media.
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Tuesday 7:11 p.m.: A crowd gathers at Old Concord Road in the University City area and reportedly begins surrounding officers. Police say Civil Emergency Unit deployed “to safely remove our officers from the area.”
Tuesday 7:45 p.m.: Police say crowd begins to transition from peaceful protesters “to a more aggressive group of agitators.” A police officer is injured attempting “to de-escalate agitators during demonstrations.” Crowd blocks road.
Tuesday 8 p.m.: Police report multiple people began damaging police vehicles and throwing objects at officers on the scene.
Tuesday 8:51 p.m.: Mayor Jennifer Roberts issues statement asking the community for calm. Follows up with statement minutes later saying community deserves answers and a full investigation into the shooting will ensue.
Tuesday 9:58 p.m.: Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department identifies the officer and the man who was shot. The officer involved was Brentley Vinson, an African American who has been with the police force since July 21, 2014, and is assigned to the Metro Division. The deceased man is identified as Keith Lamont Scott, 43, of Charlotte.
Tuesday 11 p.m.: Police give order for crowd to disperse. After an additional dispersal order was ignored by demonstrators, police officers deployed tear gas to disperse the demonstrators, who continued to throw objects and damage property.
Tuesday 1:45 a.m.: An additional group of protesters gathers near Interstate 85, throwing rocks at cars. The group spreads to travel lanes. Both north and southbound lanes are shut down. Motorists report rocks being thrown off overpasses into traffic below. Two or three tractor trailers stopped by the crowd are looted and the contents thrown onto the road. Two fires are started by protesters using items taken from the trucks.
Wednesday 2:30 a.m.: Protesters reportedly shut down W.T. Harris Boulevard in both directions near Interstate 85 ramps to Old Concord Road. Police in riot gear show up to disperse the group.
Wednesday 3 a.m.: Tear gas is deployed on the crowd and Interstate 85 reopens at 3:30 a.m.
Wednesday 3 a.m.: Protesters hit the Walmart on North Tryon, where someone throws a rock though a window.
Wednesday 9:30 a.m.: City Mayor Jennifer Roberts holds press conference promising city will be transparent with the facts in the case and repeats call for calm. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Kerr Putney, speaking at the same press conference, says officers recovered a gun at the scene of the shooting, believed to be the victim’s. Putney says no book was found. He says social media is perpetuating a different scenario than that of police investigators. Putney predicts protests will continue Wednesday, and he says the department will be prepared.
Wednesday 10:30 a.m.: Activist group of African-American religious leaders called T.H.U.G. holds press conference contradicting police investigators. The group says it will take legal action against the city and is hiring an attorney. The ministers call on the black community to stage an economic boycott of white-run businesses in Charlotte, including the community’s largest malls.
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