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Leader in Arlington NAACP chapter killed in shootout in Turks and Caicos

Kent Carter, vice president of the Arlington branch, was killed while on vacation in Turks and Caicos.

ARLINGTON, Va. — A recent shooting in the Turks and Caicos resulted in the deaths of three individuals and left five others badly injured. One of the men killed was a leader in the Arlington, Virginia chapter of the NAACP.  

Kent Carter, a realtor in Northern Virginia, served as a vice president and chairman of the criminal justice committee for the chapter. He was caught in the crosshairs of a shootout while on vacation and killed on Oct. 2. 

According to police in Turks and Caicos, the shooting started around 6 p.m. Sunday when the suspects "indiscriminately shot" into a car filled with staff from a local business, and two tourists -- one being Carter -- traveling back to their hotel after an excursion. 

Carter and one of the local staff members were killed in the attack, and three others were injured. 

"I believe the attack was targeted and carried out by armed gang members who act without conscience, who have no regard for life and who are hell-bent on causing indiscriminate harm and misery across the TCI," Commissioner of Police Trevor Botting said in a press conference. "This violence is linked to drugs supply and is fueled by revenge, turf wars and retribution." 

One other person, believed at this time to be one of the suspects, was killed during the police response to the gunfire, and two others were injured, including one of the officers. 

“He's just an outstanding citizen," the president of the Arlington NAACP chapter, Julius Spain said. "A patriot, philanthropist, one who really is genuinely concerned about social welfare and social justice and civil rights of individuals in our community." 

Spain said Carter was also an army veteran, having served in the middle east multiple times. A native to Tennessee, he'd been living in Arlington for more than a decade. 

“He was one of those individuals who perhaps was not always out front, he worked a lot behind the scenes," Spain said. "But he was very effective. And when he was at the table representing, not just the NAACP, but those from underrepresented communities here in Arlington he served them well,” Spain said. 

The NAACP Arlington chapter released a statement expressing condolences to Carter's family, and discussing his work with the branch. 

"Kent was an activist and philanthropist well known for his dedication to, and uplifting of, our community," a statement from the NAACP Arlington branch said. "His civic work and volunteerism also extended throughout the broader Arlington community and with Keller Williams Realty and the Prince Hall Freemasons of Virginia. Our deepest sympathies go out to his family. May God grant them strength during this time of sorrow."

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