A day after Derek Chauvin was convicted of murdering George Floyd, another black man was killed at the hands of law enforcement in North Carolina.
A Pasquotank County sheriff's deputy shot and killed a Black man on Wednesday morning while serving a search warrant at a residence in Elizabeth City, sparking protests against police brutality
Andrew Brown Jr. Was Unarmed, Says Family
The man was identified as 40-year-old Andrew Brown Jr., who family members say was unarmed at the time of the shooting. His family added that Brown did not carry a gun and did not hurt anyone. He was the father of 10 children.
According to eyewitnesses, Brown was seen getting into a car and trying to drive away from law enforcement when multiple shots were fired by the deputy, striking Brown. Neighbors said they heard six to eight shots. Brown was later pronounced dead.
The circumstances of the shooting remain unclear, and police have not confirmed or denied the family's version of events that led to the shooting.
Deputy Placed on Leave, Investigation Underway
The deputy involved in the shooting has not yet been identified. At a news conference on Wednesday afternoon, Pasquotank County Sheriff Tom Wooten II said that the deputy had been placed on administrative leave pending an "active criminal investigation.
"The sheriff's office trusts the ability of our North Carolina State Bureau of Investigations and we will be transparent and we will take the proper actions based on the findings of that investigation," Wooten said. The North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation will handle the investigation into the shooting.
Wooten confirmed that Brown was the resident of the house where the warrant was being served adding that it is "a tragic day here." Officers serving the warrant were wearing active body cameras at the time of the shooting, however, Wooten would not say when the footage would be released to the public.
Brown's shooting prompted instant outrage from the community as nearly 200 protesters took to the streets, calling on local authorities to be transparent and provide body camera footage of the shooting.
Recent Police Shootings of Black Individuals
Brown's death is the latest in a recent string of police shootings involving Black individuals across the country. On Tuesday, a Columbus, Ohio, police officer shot and killed a 16-year-old Ma'khia Bryant after she appeared to have lunged at someone with a knife during a fight. The shocking incident was captured on the officer's body camera.
Earlier this month, a white police officer in the Minneapolis suburb of Brooklyn Center fatally shot 20-year-old Daunte Wright, a Black man, during a traffic stop. The officer later claimed she fired her service weapon by accident and mistook her gun for a taser, as previously reported.