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North Carolina Police Shoot, Kill Unarmed Car Crash Victim Seeking Help

Officers in Charlotte, North Carolina, shot to death an unarmed 24-year-old man who was running toward them in what they perceived as a threatening manner’a man who was seeking help after having crashed his car.

The Daily Caller reports that Jonathan Ferrell approached officers arriving in response to a breaking and entering call from a home in Charlotte. Ferrell ran toward the officers when they arrived, and one of them fired a stun gun, which was unsuccessful.

Officer Randall Kerrick then shot and killed Ferrell, according to the Daily Caller.

Ferrell, driving a black Toyota Camry, crashed his car into an embankment at around 2 a.m., reports the Charlotte Observer. Investigators were not able to determine whether he was injured, but he apparently climbed through the back window of the mangled car and walked to the nearest house. There was no indication of alcohol use.

The woman who called 911 thought Ferrell was a robber, and asked police to come to her home.

After a stun gun was unsuccessfully fired, Kerrick fired several wounds from his weapon and struck Ferrell multiple times. Ferrell died at the scene. In a statement, the Charlotte police department said, “The investigation showed that the subsequent shooting of Mr. Ferrell was excessive.”

Kerrick has been charged with voluntary manslaughter, reports the Daily Caller. In addition, all three officers have been placed on paid leave, pending an investigation.

A former student and football player at Florida A&M University, Ferrell was engaged to be married. He was the sixth person to be shot by a Charlotte police officer since 2012 in North Carolina, where officers are permitted to use deadly force should they fear for their lives, or someone else’s life.

The Raleigh personal injury attorneys at Kelly & West are experienced with handling cases that involve personal injury and wrongful death. If you or a loved one are considering a wrongful death lawsuit, contact us to discuss the details of your case today.

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