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Protests over killing of black man prompt state of emergency in Charlotte

ANADOLU AGENCY
WASHINGTON
Published
Police clash with protestors as they protest the death of unarmed blackman, who was shot and killed by police officers Sept. 21, 2016 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (AFP Photo) Police clash with protestors as they protest the death of unarmed blackman, who was shot and killed by police officers Sept. 21, 2016 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (AFP Photo)

Chaos gripped downtown Charlotte Wednesday night as protests against the fatal police shooting of a black man devolved into violence prompting authorities to declare a state of emergency in the city.

Gov. Pat McCrory sent the national guard and state highway patrol to quell the unrest.

"I understand the concerns and I understand the frustrations and anger, but I never will respect violence. Violence is unacceptable," McCrory said while speaking to CNN.

One male was shot during the widespread unrest in North Carolina's biggest city.

Authorities said he is in critical condition and on life support.

A fellow civilian, not police, shot him, authorities said.

Commenting on antagonists among the protesters, McCrory said: "Their goal is not to contribute to a discussion. Their goal is destruction and anarchy, and that's something our nation cannot accept."

Wednesday's protests are the second day of civil unrest. Demonstrators on Tuesday blocked a major highway, later looting a tractor-trailer and burning its contents.

A day later, protests started at a prayer vigil before an angry group departed and headed toward downtown Charlotte where pandemonium later ensued as storefronts windows were smashed, fires lit on city streets and spats of violence erupt between fellow demonstrators, as well as between demonstrators and police.

Police clad in riot gear fired tear gas in attempts to disperse protesters who were sporadically throwing objects at officers, including glass bottles and fireworks.

Keith Lamont Scott, 43, was killed Tuesday by police, sparking the unrest.

His family maintains he was holding a book, and not a gun, when he was killed.

But Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Kerr Putney told a news conference Scott was ordered multiple times to drop a firearm, but failed to comply.

Police fired because Scott exited a vehicle still holding the handgun and posed a threat to the officers, Putney said.

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