City officials provide updates on protests, shooting investigation

City officials provide updates on protests

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Mayor Jennifer Roberts and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief spoke to the media on Thursday following a violent night of protests in Charlotte. 

Roberts asked the community for peace after a man was shot and several businesses in uptown were looted during Thursday night's protest. 

"I ask again for calm peaceful demonstrations from our citizens," Roberts said. "The safety of our citizens is our top priority. We're working with our partners to provide protection for our city this evening." 

Roberts urged community leaders to be advocates for peace during protests and demonstrations. 

"I want to thank our faith and religious leaders to keep the protests peaceful," she said during a press conference Thursday morning. 

CMPD Chief Kerr Putney said 44 arrests were made during last night's protests in uptown. One person was shot near the Omni Hotel and is currently in critical condition at Carolinas Medical Center.

Putney took several questions from the media on the body cam video from the Keith Scott shooting. Putney said that the department would not be releasing the video to the media or public.

However, the Scott family requested and will be able to see the video today, according to Putney. 

Finally, Putney provided more details on the protests and how the violence escalated as the night progressed.

"After peaceful protests, additional protesters joined and started blocking roadways while moving to transit center, Putney said.  

At 9 p.m., a group of protesters moved through uptown toward I-277 and briefly shut down the road before police were able to move them out, according to Putney.

Just before midnight, several uptown stores and hotels had their windows smashed and items stolen. The Charlotte Hornets team store at Time Warner Cable Arena was broken into and looted. Hotels in uptown had lobby doors and windows smashed by protesters. 

"Our city leaders and governor allowed us to declare a state of emergency," Putney said. "We want to protect our people, our officers, our city."

Governor Pat McCrory declared a State of Emergency to initiate efforts to deploy the North Carolina National Guard after protests turned into violence in uptown.

Several businesses in uptown such as Wells Fargo, Bank of America and Duke Energy told their employees to work from home Thursday. UNCC's center city campus will be closing at 5 p.m. 


Copyright 2016 WCNC


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