An attorney representing the family of Andrew Brown Jr., a Black man who was fatally shot by sheriff’s deputies in North Carolina, has said that they intend to file a federal lawsuit over the killing.
According to CBS News, attorney Harry Daniels said that the suit will allege that the deputies deprived Brown of his rights. Brown was fatally shot last month in Elizabeth City, N.C., when officers serving search and felony warrants surrounded his car. As Brown tried to drive off in his vehicle the officers opened fire because that’s the only way cops know how to handle problems.
Earlier this week, District Attorney Andrew Womble declined to file charges against the deputies, saying they were “justified” in the shooting. “The officers’ actions were consistent with their training and fully supported under the law in protecting their lives and this community,” Womble said during a press conference. Brown didn’t have a weapon at the time, but Womble claimed that he used his car as a “deadly weapon.”
Pasquotank County Sheriff Tommy Wooten told CBS News that the deputies did everything right in that situation, which really has me wondering what the fuck the wrong way to handle that situation is. Letting him live?
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Attorneys for the family called on the Department of Justice to intervene in the case after Womble announced that he wouldn’t be filing charges, and an investigation into the shooting by the FBI is already underway.
While the district attorney released a portion of the body camera footage when announcing his decision, the family has demanded that the whole be released, with Daniels telling CBS News that there’s no reason for the footage to be withheld if the deputies aren’t going to face charges. Wooten has filed for the full video to be released, as police footage can only be released by court order under state law.