According to the local police department, 12 officers were injured when some in the crowd began throwing objects. Crowds had gathered in the area after officers shot and killed a local African-American man at an apartment complex. The officer who shot him is also reportedly African-American. There are some conflicting reports as to what led to the shooting.
Police arrived at the area in the afternoon to look for a suspect with an outstanding arrest warrant. Moments later, they saw another man, named Keith Lamont Scott—unrelated to the search—exiting his car. There are conflicting reports as to what happened next. Police say after he exited his car, he got back in and then came back out with a gun. Police say he “posed an imminent deadly threat to the officers, who subsequently fired their weapon striking the subject.” However, some witnesses say Scott was unarmed, and was reading a book, not holding a gun. Scott’s daughter says her father is disabled, and was simply waiting in his car for his son to be dropped off by the school bus.
Scott’s brother also said the that officer who shot him wasn’t in uniform, and was instead wearing plainclothes.
In the hours after the shooting, demonstrators came to area. Police used tear gas on the crowds, as of some the protests took a violent turn, with some demonstrators throwing rocks and bottles. A local Walmart and several tractor trailers stopped on the Interstate were looted as well. Multiple arrests were made. As the Charlotte Observer notes however, “Not all the interactions were so tense. Around 1 a.m. Wednesday, police were seen handing bottles of water to the several dozen people who were still protesting.”