Body camera footage of the fatal police shooting Andrew Brown Jr., has been released to his family, but only a 20-second snippet. Family and attorney believe there’s a lack of transparency from the police department.
According to the Raleigh News & Observer, family attorney Chantel Lassiter spoke to an Elizabeth City, N.C., crowd during a press conference, stating that “this was an execution.”
“Andrew Brown was in his driveway. The sheriff truck blocked him in his driveway so he could not exit his driveway,” Lassister continued. “Andrew had his hands on his steering wheel. He was not reaching for anything, he wasn’t touching anything, he wasn’t throwing anything around. He had his hands firmly on the steering wheel. They run up to his vehicle, shooting. He still sat there in his vehicle with his hands on the steering wheel, while being shot at.”
According to Portsmouth, Va., station WAVY, the family had been set to see the video at 11:30 a.m. on Monday, but a delay of a few hours took place and they saw it Monday afternoon. Elizabeth City and the surrounding area have declared a state of emergency ahead of the public release of the video.
Brown was shot and killed by deputies while they executed a search warrant last Wednesday (April 21). Witnesses say Brown was driving away at the time and deputies fired several rounds, killing him.
Seven deputies were reportedly placed on administrative leave and three resigned. The three who left their jobs were not directly involved in the shooting, says Pasquotank County Sheriff Tommy Wooten.
Pasquotank County Attorney R. Michael Cox released a statement shortly after the family attorneys’ press conference. He says the blurring of faces “when necessary to protect an active internal investigation” is a statute under North Carolina law, according to WAVY. The names of the deputies have not been released.
“We are also continuing to seek transparency within the law and continue our efforts to get a court order that would allow the video to be released to the public,” Cox said, according to WAVY.
Attorneys for Brown’s family had demanded the body cam video be released unredacted.
“We do not feel we got transparency,” said Ben Crump, one of the attorneys representing the family, according to the Norfolk Virginian-Pilot.
Craig T. Lee contributed to this story.