Thursday, the Congressional Black Caucus delivered a message to Attorney General, Loretta Lynch. Stop the killing of unarmed African Americans.
Rep. Alma Adams (D-NC) said:
"We've had a lot of violence in our community and I am saddened about that because people should have an opportunity to protest and to protest peacefully," said Adams. "And that's what many of the residents were trying to do last night. The National Guard has been called into Charlotte and we regret that. I don't think this should have gotten so far."
Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-NY) added:
"No American should have to fear the people sworn to protect them...Dr. King's soul and essence is in every peaceful demonstrator that is on the streets because Dr. King would be demonstrating today when you see the kind of attack that apparently happens to unarmed black men and women with no transparency."
The letter from the caucus asks Lynch to "aggressively pursue investigations, indictments and prosecutions through the Office of Civil Rights against any and all law enforcement officers who harm or kill innocent unarmed black men, women and children."
Rep. Adams claims the citizens of Charlotte had no "opportunity to protest and protest peacefully." What she doesn't say is that it wasn't law enforcement that stopped peaceful demonstrations, but violent rioters.
Within about an hour of the Keith Lamont Scott shooting in Charlotte, North Carolina, rumors began to spread like wildfire that "the victim was a disabled man, holding a book, and he was shot four times by an officer in civilian clothes," reports The Charlotte Observer.
The Observer adds:
"A woman who is reportedly the victim’s daughter takes to Facebook Live to depict what was going on. A crowd of about 100 protesters show up at site of the shooting. #KeithLamontScott begins to trend on social media."
On Facebook Live, Lyric Scott screamed:
"They shot my daddy 'cause he's black. He was sitting in his car reading a mother******* book. So they shot him. That's what happened."
By approximately 7:45, "protests" became aggressive. Over the next seven hours, that aggression mutated into full on riots, with rock throwing, looting, and damaged property.
As it turns out, the story about a peaceful man reading a book was a falsehood. There was no book at the scene, only a gun, said Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Kerr Putney at a press conference Wednesday morning.
"Police in Charlotte have confirmed to ABC News that they have video that shows Scott had a gun in his hand during his interaction with police officers before he was fatally shot."
Joe Bruno, a reporter for WSOC-TV shared this image on his Twitter confirming the presence of a firearm:
The details of the shooting were later revealed.
Tuesday afternoon, police officers were in pursuit of a suspect. The officers came across Keith Lamont Scott, who allegedly exited his vehicle with a gun. He got back in his car, and the officers approached.
Upon the officers' arrival at his vehicle, Scott emerged once again, still holding the gun. The officers told him to get back in his car, but he didn't comply, and that's when African American Officer Brentley Vinson fired the fatal shot.
CPR was administered, but Scott later died.
A black cop shoots an allegedly armed black man, and the city burns. Aside from property damage and looting, a cop has been injured, a CNN correspondent was knocked to the ground, more than a dozen people have been hurt, and a civilian has been killed, according to NBC, and CNN.
A similar situation occurred in Milwaukee when African American Police Officer Dominique Heaggan-Brown shot Sylville Smith after Smith refused to drop his stolen firearm. Riots erupted.
However, the justice system appears to be functioning in the case of Tulsa Police Officer Betty Shelby, who has just been charged with manslaughter in the shooting death of Terence Crutcher.
NBC News reports that the "Tulsa County District Attorney's Office found she [Shelby] 'reacted unreasonably' and became 'emotionally involved to the point that she overreacted.'"
This isn't even mentioning the Michael Brown case, wherein the narrative that he was surrendering with his hands up was proven demonstrably false by eye-witness testimony and forensic evidence.
This isn't even mentioning the Walter Scott shooting in which South Carolina Police Officer, Michael Slager, was indicted by a grand jury for fatally shooting African American Walter Scott in the back as he ran away. Slager is facing life in prison.
The evidence is muddy in the Terence Crutcher case, and clear in the Walter Scott case. That's what the justice system is for, to sort out fact from fiction, and to hold responsible those who are in the wrong.
The Congressional Black Caucus might want to look at the evidence in the Smith and Scott shootings, as well as the developments in the Crutcher case, before lamenting the attack on "unarmed black men and women with no transparency."