CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - A man shot and killed by a Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police officer in a west Charlotte shopping center parking lot Wednesday afternoon has been identified by a police source as 32-year-old Michael Kelley.
The deadly incident happened around 3:11 p.m. outside the Koffee Kup Cafeteria, police say. The area shares a parking lot with the Family Dollar on West Boulevard, near the intersection of Remount Road.
CMPD Chief Putney said two armed robberies had taken place around 2 p.m. Wednesday. One of those robberies involved a vehicle, the police chief said.
The first robbery happened at 1:40 p.m. at a church on Freeland Lane between S. Tryon Street and Ellenwood Place. Police said the suspect walked into the church and asked a man inside for money. When the man in the church - Pastor Larry James - declined, the suspect reportedly cut him with a box cutter and took his car keys before leaving in the victim’s car - an Infiniti.
A short time later, a man matching the suspect’s description robbed a Family Dollar store on W. Tyvola Road and left in an Infiniti. Employees at the store told police they believed the robber was armed with a gun.
Putney told WBTV that officers matched the vehicle and suspect description a short time later in the parking lot of a west Charlotte shopping center where the shooting happened.
Around 2:40 p.m., officers found the Infiniti in a parking lot on West Boulevard and began searching the area for the suspect. That’s when a K9 officer found the man on foot in the parking lot where the shooting happened.
WBTV has learned that Kelley’s father was a CMPD officer and his grandfather retired as a Major with the department.
“All of a sudden he come out and he was pointing an object I couldn’t tell what it was but he was pointing an object and he started walking toward the officers,” said Ron Straite, who witnessed the shooting.
“The suspect created an imminent threat to the officer,” said Chief Putney, who said the suspect was rushed to the hospital and later died.
“The guy just wouldn’t stop. The officer told him but he never would," said Straite.
Straite said he was scared by what he saw and surprised when he heard the shots.
“I had no idea it was going to lead to a shooting like that," said Straite.
The suspect was taken by Medic to Atrium Health where he died a short time later.
“It hurts my soul that police are involved in another shooting,” said Dino Davis, another witness to the shooting.
According to WBTV sources, Kelley was the son of a former CMPD officer and grandson of a retired CMPD major.
The officer involved in the shooting wasn’t injured according to CMPD. That officer has been placed on administrative leave while CMPD and the Internal Affairs Bureau investigate the incident, which is a part of standard procedure.