CMPD responds to recommendations following Keith Scott appeal hearing

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - The Citizen's Review Board (CRB) has recommended that CMPD revise its policy and training on the use of de-escalation tactics.

This recommendation is among the other two that CMPD released publicly after the evidentiary hearing about the appeal filed for Keith Scott on behalf of his family.

Keith Scott was fatally shot by a CMPD officer last September.

CMPD says the shooting met the legal standard, but it is "working to determine if amending policies or directives related to this case would allow us to better serve our community."

In response to the de-escalation recommendation, CMPD said that de-escalation tactics are reliant on how much of a threat the situation poses.

"No directive can capture every possible scenario that might confront an officer," CMPD said.

But in a news conference held at 2:30 p.m., CMPD said of de-escalation "...we need to make sure we are improving decision making."

CMPD also reminded the public that "an armed, non-compliant subject is perhaps the most dangerous situation for an officer."

CMPD agreed with the board that that less lethal options should be available to CMPD officers when they conduct vehicle takedowns. It said it will evaluate how to achieve that goal.

"Tasers, OC, hands are available to me once we get a subject to put that weapon down. Prior to that, I could lose my life," commented a CMPD officer during a news conference.

Other recommendations could not legally be released, CMPD said because they are "specific to personnel."

"We believe this case demonstrates the need for CMPD to comprehensively evaluate possible scenarios that could arise in a vehicle takedown situation, and develop guidance and training around how to deal with specific situations," the CRB said.

CMPD agreed with the CRB recommendation that it review reliance on reaction time. It said an independent third party with "scientific expertise" will conduct a validation study.

The study will include "actual testing to confirm (or not) that a suspect can fire a shot before the officer has time to react and defend him or herself," CMPD said.

In the interest of serving the community more effectively, CMPD said that they are committed to reviewing the CRB findings and implementing what is appropriate.

"Although members of the Citizens Review Board acknowledge that as private citizens they do not have expertise in police tactics, their recommendations are relevant," CMPD said.

CMPD said the board's work "secures the underpinnings of fairness and accountability," and credited the recommendations as giving it an opportunity to improve serving the Charlotte community.

Friday, the City of Charlotte unveiled a new website examining the year since Scott's shooting and the steps the city has taken to address community concerns. You can find the website here.

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