Community remembers Jonathan Ferrell 9 years after he was mistakenly shot and killed by CMPD officer
It’s been almost a decade since Ferrell’s death, but a group of people in Charlotte say they’re committed to making sure his memory lives on
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Many people move to Charlotte every day so many current residents might not have been there nine years ago. But if you were, you’ll remember what happened on Sept. 14 in 2013.
Jonathan Ferrell, 24, was in a car accident and was stumbling towards officers, bloody and beaten but unable to ask for help. A CMPD officer shot and killed him, thinking he had been trying to break into a house, and considered him a threat. Years later, the city settled with his family, but, feelings run deep
It’s been almost a decade since Ferrell’s death, but a group of people in Charlotte say they’re committed to making sure his memory lives on.
With balloons, flowers, and music on Wednesday night, a community remembered Ferrell.
“It needs to be talked about, and it needs to be remembered.”
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It’s been nine years since his death, but activist Kass Ottley refuses to let his memory fade.
Year after year, she returns to the site of his death to make sure Ferrell’s legacy is remembered.
“A legacy of love. A legacy of community. A legacy of he was a good person,” Kass Ottley, executive director of Seeking Justice Charlotte said. “And no matter how hard they tried to make him a criminal, no matter how hard they tried to make him a bad person, it didn’t work.”
Ferrell was shot and killed by CMPD officer Randall Kerrick after getting into a car wreck and walking to a nearby neighborhood for help.
Kerrick was indicted but set free after a mistrial.
The city of Charlotte settled with the Ferrell family, but Ottley says justice wasn’t fully carried out.
“They paid his mother two and a quarter million dollars as if that’s justice. A settlement and a paycheck is not justice because black lives are not for sale,” she said.
But above the cries for justice, tonight was a time to remember Jonathan Ferrell for the man he was and for a community to stand against any other lives being taken.
Kimberly Williams, Event Co-Planner
“People are not only coming out to mourn, but they’re also coming out being hopeful,” event co-planner Kimberly Williams said.
Hopefully, this remembrance will continue to bring about change.
“From the laws that are being changed, from the officers that are being held accountable, we’re hoping that it can bring a wave of triumph, something that we can continue. By remembering Jonathan Ferrell.”
Ottley also says that on Jonathan’s birthday, Oct. 11, they’ll organize their yearly food drive to provide meals to families in the community as a way to further remember Jonathan’s legacy.
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