US officer fatally shoots black man in North Carolina
A white US police officer has fatally shot an unarmed African American man during a foot chase in Raleigh, North Carolina.
The incident happened on Monday after Akiel Denkins, 24, began to run away from a police officer, who later shot the man seven times, killing him, officials said.
An officer was chasing and “trying to detain an adult male suspect who was wanted for a felony drug charge,” Police Chief Cassandra Deck-Brown said. “During the course of the pursuit, the suspect was shot and killed by the officer. Initially, it is known that a firearm was located within close proximity to the deceased suspect.”
Police said that Denkins was carrying a weapon at the time of shooting, but his mother Rolanda Byrd asserted that her son was unarmed.
“Everybody seen it. They ain’t going down with this one. They ain’t gonna get away with this one, there’s at least 40 eyewitnesses out here.
The incident sparked protests with nearly 100 people gathering at the scene and chanting “no justice, no peace” and “black lives matter”.
North Carolina’s American Civil Liberties Union also criticized the shooting, condemning police brutality and injustice against people of color in the US.
“What we do know is that far too many people of color are victims of wrongful targeting and excessive use of force by law enforcement officers across the country, and North Carolina is not immune to that reality,” said a spokesman for the union.
The killings of several unarmed African Americans in the US have sparked massive protests across the American cities and towns over the past two years.
The US police fatally shot nearly 1,000 people in 2015, of which 90 were unarmed and did not possess weapons of any kind during a confrontation, according to a year-long study by the Washington Post.