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NEW YORK, NY – Color Of Change, the nation’s largest online racial justice organization, issued the following statement in response to the decision of Mecklenburg County District Attorney Andrew Murray to not pursue charges against Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Officer Brentley Vinson, who shot and killed Keith Lamont Scott in September.
Rashad Robinson, Executive Director of Color Of Change:
“Today, Mecklenburg County District Attorney Andrew Murray made a mockery of justice. Not only did he refuse to pursue charges against Brentley Vinson, the police officer who killed Keith Lamont Scott, but he used his press conference as an extended defense of the police, ultimately justifying the killing because of the look Scott gave to the officer. District Attorney Murray chose to put Keith Scott on trial, rather than the officer who killed him.
“We have heard these excuses before. District Attorney Murray’s circus today is just another example of how the closeness between prosecutors and police stifle justice. When officers know that their buddies in the DA’s office will never charge them, they don’t have an incentive to resist using fatal force. They don’t have an incentive to deescalate the situation, even when someone—like Scott’s wife shouting her husbands’ medical history to the officer—gives them every reason to do so.
“As long as prosecutors choose to give their friends on the police force a free pass, to let them shoot first and ask questions later, to refuse to release videos of the killings—there will be no justice and no peace. Prosecutors across the country need to remember that they work for the people who elected them, not the police they continue to shield.”