District Attorney Andrew Womble has announced that no officers will be charged for the shooting death of Andrew Brown Jr. last month. Womble made the announcement during a press conference on Tuesday in North Carolina.
“After reviewing the investigation conducted by the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, Mr. Brown's death while tragic, was justified because Mr. Brown's actions caused three deputies with the Pasquotank County Sheriff's Office to reasonably believe it was necessary to use deadly force to protect themselves and others,” Womble said.
Womble's announcement comes nearly one month after officers in Elizabeth City, North Carolina approached Brown Jr. with a search warrant and a pair of arrest warrants. Brown Jr. reportedly drove away from the officers and the officers responded by shooting at the North Carolina resident. Ultimately, Brown Jr. was hit five times and sustained a fatal wound to the head. According to multiple reports, Brown Jr. was not armed and did not threaten the officers involved.
Thus far, the public has not seen any of the body camera footage of the incident. Moreover, members of the Brown family have viewed less than 15% of the body camera footage recorded on that day.
"There were so many shots that we found difficulty in counting the number of shots that his vehicle received. At some point, there was a final shot [and] that it appeared Mr. Brown had lost control," Brown family attorney Chance Lynch said after viewing portions of the body camera footage.
"There was a shot fired. When the shot was fired, he put the car in reverse, putting it several feet, if not yards, away from the police that were there. He turned his wheel to the left, away from law enforcement. At no point did we ever see any police behind his vehicle. At no point did we ever see Mr. Brown make contact with law enforcement."
Judge Jeffrey Foster has repeatedly stated that he did not release the full video to the family or the public because he did not want the public's reaction to interfere with the investigation. With Womble's decision, it is unclear if his ruling will remain the same.
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