CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Authorities tried to quell public anger and correct what they characterized as false information Wednesday as Charlotte dealt with a second night of violent protests, adding itself to the list of U.S. cities that have erupted in violence over the death of a black man at the hands of police. The governor declared a state of emergency.
One man was shot Wednesday night when he was shot during a protest march, paramedics said. The was pulled away by paramedics protected by police in riot gear, who a short time later fired tear gas at the hundreds of protesters.
Charlotte City Councilman Kenny Smith (District 6) confirmed that seven CMPD officers were injured during the protests and taken to area hospitals.
With officials refusing to release any video of the Tuesday shooting of 43-year-old Keith Lamont Scott, anger built as two starkly different versions emerged: Police say Scott disregarded repeated demands to drop his gun, while neighborhood residents say he was holding a book, not a weapon, as he waited for his son to get off the school bus.
The killing inflamed racial tensions in a city that seemed to have steered clear of the troubles that engulfed other places.
Destructive protests Tuesday continued into Wednesday night when a group of protesters split from a peaceful prayer vigil and marched through downtown Charlotte. Police kept their distance for about an hour, but officers in riot gear moved in as the marchers approached an upscale hotel.
Police in riot gear then began marching arm in arm through downtown Charlotte intersections, shooting tear gas at people who charged them. At least one protester knocked down a reporter during a live shot.