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Statewide rallies, including in Charlotte, held Tuesday seeking justice for Andrew Brown Jr.

Updated: Jun. 1, 2021 at 6:03 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Rallies were held across North Carolina on Tuesday for Andrew Brown Jr., a Black man who was fatally by deputies in Elizabeth City.

The Pasquotank County District Attorney announced that the officers will not be charged and that the deadly shooting was “justified.”

On Tuesday, at 5 p.m., a rally took place in Elizabeth City, and seven other cities in North Carolina at the same time, including one in Charlotte.

The Charlotte rally was at the Government Center on E. 4th Street.

According to a press release, the rallies were led by faith leaders who “demand truth, transparency and accountability in the investigation of the killing of Andrew Brown Jr. by sheriff’s deputies.”

Members of the clergy are asking for these demands:

  • Release of body cam video to public
  • Special prosecutor appointed
  • Pass legislation for police accountability

Other rallies across the state were in Asheville, Fayetteville, Greensboro, Raleigh, Wilmington and Winston-Salem.

Brown was shot by deputies on April 21 while law enforcement officers were serving drug-related search and arrest warrants on his Perry Street home in Elizabeth City.

His death, and the decision not to charge the officers, have sparked outrage and many nights of protests.

Family, attorneys and demonstrators say Brown was “shot in the back of the head by deputies who wore tactical gear to serve search and arrest warrants for nonviolent drug offenses.”

“Our demands in this killing include patterns-or-practices investigations by the U.S. Justice Department into the Pasquotank County Sheriff’s Office and the office of District Attorney Andrew Womble,” said Rev. Glencie Rhedrick, co-chair of the Charlotte Clergy Coalition for Justice. “DA Womble has said the shooting was justified and that he will not pursue charges.”

The statewide rally “Stand with Elizabeth City to demand #JusticeForAndrewBrown” is led by Repairers of the Breach, the NC Council of Churches and B.R.I.D.G.E., along with faith leaders across North Carolina.

Civil rights leaders asked that the FBI expedite an independent investigation into the shooting, as well as investigate Sheriff Tommy Wooten and the district attorney.

Womble said during a news conference, however, that Brown’s “actions caused three deputies to reasonably believe it was necessary to use deadly force to protect themselves and others.”

The district attorney said deputies clearly identified themselves to Brown, who refused orders to stop and drove his car directly at one of the officers.

Womble played the video from multiple police body cameras during the news conference.

He said the first shot fired at Brown’s car went through the front windshield, not the back as was previously reported.

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