Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officer Brentley Vinson will not face charges over the fatal Sept. 20 shooting of Keith Lamont Scott in North Carolina, the Charlotte Observer reports. Scott, a 43-year-old black man, was carrying a gun when he stepped out of his SUV during a confrontation with police officers outside his apartment, District Attorney Andrew Murray said Wednesday, and he refused to comply with at least 10 police commands to drop the weapon. Thus Vinson, 26 and also black, acted lawfully when he shot Scott, Murray said, per USA Today. He added that he had consulted with 15 veteran prosecutors, and they unanimously recommended no charges be filed due to insufficient evidence.
Murray added that speculation Scott was holding a book, not a gun, proved to be false. "A reading book was not found in the front or back seats of Mr. Scott's SUV," he said, and Scott's DNA was found on the grip and ammunition slide of the gun, which had a bullet in the chamber and the safety off. Charlotte saw rioting, violence, and protests in the days following Scott's death, and police are on alert for community reaction to the announcement that no charges will be filed. Scott, a convicted felon who suffered a traumatic brain injury in 2015, was seen allegedly rolling marijuana in his SUV when police officers were attempting to serve an arrest warrant on an unrelated suspect. Officers then spotted the gun in his SUV and ordered him to exit the vehicle; the fatal confrontation ensued. (Read more Keith Scott stories.)