Police officer charged for Tulsa shooting

Dhaka,  Monday,   2016-09-23
Published : 23 Sep 2016, 12:54:00

Tulsa shooting: Manslaughter charge for police officer who shot black man

A police officer who fatally shot an unarmed black motorist in Tulsa, Oklahoma, has been charged with manslaughter, a prosecutor has said.

Officer Betty Shelby shot and killed Terence Crutcher last week while he was standing next to his broken-down car.

In Charlotte, North Carolina, a curfew has come into force to prevent a third night of violence over the death of a black man who was shot by police.

Police used tear gas to disperse demonstrators blocking a main highway.

Protesters defied the curfew and remained on the streets, amid a strong police presence.

Officials say Keith Lamont Scott refused to drop his gun but his family say he was unarmed and holding a book.

A video showing the shooting was viewed by Mr Scott's family on Thursday but their lawyer said it was inconclusive.

It has also emerged that one man injured in gunfire in Charlotte died from his wounds.

The police use of force against black men has for two years been the subject of protests across the US, and now it has also become an election issue.

Four days before the first presidential debate, Republican Donald Trump said the violence was largely due to drugs.

"If you're not aware, drugs are a very, very big factor in what you're watching on television at night," he said.

Democratic vice-presidential candidate Tim Kaine said the list of black men fatally shot by police had "grown too long" and the country needed to confront the issue of racial tensions.

Republican Congressman Robert Pittenger, of North Carolina, told the BBC the protesters hated white people because white people were successful, but he later apologised for his comments in an interview with CNN.

In the aftermath of the Tulsa shooting, Officer Shelby said Mr Crutcher had not followed her commands and she had opened fire when he began to reach into his car window.

Ms Shelby's lawyer, Scott Wood, has said she believed Mr Crutcher was under the influence of the synthetic drug PCP. A vial of the drug was found in the car.

His family have disputed Ms Shelby's claim, arguing that his window was closed at the time of the incident.

Police have said no gun was found on Mr Crutcher or inside his vehicle.

As well as being shot, Mr Crutcher was also struck with a stun gun by another officer.

His death sparked protests in Tulsa too but these have been peaceful.

Mr Kunzweiler said a warrant has been issued for Ms Shelby's arrest. She faces a minimum of four years in prison.

The US justice department has also opened a separate investigation to see if Mr Crutcher's civil rights were violated.


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