An officer for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department in North Carolina has been arrested and charged after allegedly shooting an unarmed man, the second such case nationally this weekend. Investigators also have reason to suspect the victim may have been seeking help from police when he was gunned down.
Charlotte ABC affiliate WSOC reported extensively on the Saturday morning (September 14) CMPD shooting of 24-year-old Jonathan Ferrell, a former football player who attended Florida A & M University. Officer Randall Kerrick, 27, was charged with voluntary manslaughter after turning himself in Saturday afternoon.
It appears the situation got out of hand after Ferrell himself was involved in a car accident and apparently seeking medical attention. After knocking on a random house door, a woman was startled and called 911 thus prompting CMPD to respond.
“To her surprise it was a person she did not know or recognize. She immediately closed the door, hit her panic alarm and called 911,” said Chief Rodney Monroe. When the police arrived, Ferrell was in a panic as he ran towards them.
“He immediately charged towards the three officers, one in particular. That officer fired his weapon several times, striking the individual multiple times,” added Monroe.
Monroe said that officers discovered Ferrell’s car in woods near the scene of the shooting and worked the angle that the man was simply disoriented after the accident. A press release from CMPD states that a taser was used on Ferrell before Kerrick fired his service weapon at him.
All three officers that responded to the call have been placed on paid leave. Kerrick was released on $50,000 bond early Sunday. Kerrick is slated to appear in Mecklenburg County court Monday afternoon.
A friend of Ferrell spoke with WSOC and expressed their sadness over the ordeal. “I am obviously shocked and saddened. We loved him. Our family loved him. That’s all I got to say,” said the friend.
Watch WSCO’s video report below. Hit the next page to see a photo of Ferrell while at FAMU.
Photos: Mecklenburg Sheriff’s Office, FAMU, WSOC