“Come out and talk to us. We just want people to come out and talk to us,” said organizer Kirk Rivers. “Are you just going to continue to let us assume what took place?”
The Pasquotank County Sheriff’s Office was attempting to serve an arrest warrant on Brown on Wednesday morning when a car pulled away and deputies fired shots, the office said in a video statement. There are still many questions surrounding the incident that follows other protests across the nation over the deaths of Black men at the hands of police officers.
“Our deputies attempted to serve the arrest warrant. They fired the shots. They’ve been put on administrative leave until we know all the facts,” Sheriff Tommy Wooten said.
Rivers told CNN’s Brian Todd that those gathered for protests want to see the body camera footage and will be back protesting until authorities make clear what happened.
But body camera footage of the incident cannot be released without a court order, according to a statement from the district attorney and the Pasquotank county attorney.
“We must follow the law and the law prohibits us from publicly releasing the body worn camera footage,” District Attorney Andrew Womble and Pasquotank County Attorney R. Michael Cox said. “The law does allow a private viewing by the family of Mr. Brown we are working with their attorney to arrange that.”
Wooten said that if the evidence shows that any of the deputies involved violated the laws or any department policies, they will be held accountable.
The deputy involved in the shooting is on leave, he said.
The North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation is investigating, District Attorney R. Andrew Womble told CNN on Wednesday.
Accounts from family and witnesses
The warrant being served on Brown was related to felony drug charges, the Pasquotank County Sheriff’s Department said on Thursday.
Fogg said Brown also had a history of resisting arrest. CNN could not immediately verify any previous resisting arrest charges against Brown.
Neighbors told CNN that deputies opened fire on the vehicle that Brown was driving, though it was unclear if the deputies started to fire before or after the car was in motion. A neighbor, Demetria Williams, said that Brown was driving, causing mud to splatter on the side of a home. The mud on the home and a deep tire mark were still visible on Thursday when CNN visited.
“By the time I got here, they was standing behind his car he was trying to get away,” Demetria Williams who lives just down the road told CNN. Williams showed CNN where the car was situated and demonstrated how the wheels were, in her words, “spinning mud.” She added: “They stood behind him. I couldn’t tell you what, who shot him. I couldn’t do that. But one of the officers or maybe a couple shot him.”
Williams said the vehicle, after driving through an open lot, then crossed Roanoke Avenue, struck a tree and came to rest. Two neighbors told CNN that deputies then pulled out Brown and attempted lifesaving medical intervention.
A man who lives at the home where the vehicle came to rest said authorities had recovered a bullet from his home. The entry point just to the right of his front door was still visible.
On Tuesday, a spokesperson for the Sheriff Department declined additional comment and said that the matter was being investigated by the state bureau of investigations. The state agency has not responded to CNN for additional comment.
While authorities have not given information on what led up to the incident, and specifically, whether Brown was armed, his family says he never carried a gun.
“That’s my favorite nephew. He never carried a gun. He didn’t own a gun,” Andrew Brown’s uncle Pete Brown told CNN.
Brown’s aunt Clarissa Gibson said she initially heard about the shooting on the news before finding out it was in fact her nephew who was shot and killed. Gibson told CNN on Wednesday she believes Brown was unarmed at the time of the shooting because he didn’t typically carry a gun.
Brown’s former girlfriend Patrice Revelle, who said she shares five children with Brown, told CNN that “Drew didn’t own a gun. He didn’t carry a gun.”
Revelle, who was not present at the time of the shooting, was adamant Brown would not have been armed.
Wooten said he will not comment on the number of shots fired because an investigation will reveal those details.
The North Carolina NAACP issued a statement calling for an “immediate review of the body cameras,” as well as for a thorough investigation of the sheriff’s department.
“Here we are again outraged to hear of yet another Black man dead, allegedly at the hands of those who are supposed to protect and serve. The murder of Andrew Brown in Elizabeth City, NC, Black man, 40-years of age and a father of 10 on the morning after the guilty on every count verdict in the trial of Derek Chauvin screams for increased scrutiny of the policing system,” officials with the state’s NAACP said, adding it would “not stand idly by and watch North Carolina become another Minnesota.”
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