AFRICANGLOBE – The trial of a Charlotte, North Carolina police officer for the shooting death of an unarmed Black man in 2013 has produced disturbing video of the last moments of the victim’s life.
Jonathan Farrell was shot 10 times by Officer Randall Kerrick on the night he died. Now, Kerrick stands accused of violating police procedure and could face up to 11 years in prison if convicted.
On the night in question, Farrell had dropped off a friend in an upscale neighborhood and was returning home in his fiancee’s car at around 2:30 a.m. when he lost control of the vehicle and crashed. He lost his cell phone in the impact and had to kick out a window to free himself from the car. He left the wrecked vehicle and was looking for help when he was gunned down.
First, Farrell went to a residence and knocked on the door. The woman who lived there thought it was her husband returning from work. When she opened the door and saw an unfamiliar Black man, she slammed the door, set off the burglar alarm and called police.
In the 911 tape, court records say, Farrell can be heard angrily telling the woman to turn off the alarm and kicking the door in frustration.
“No,” he shouted, “I need help! Turn off the alarm!”
Leaving the residence, Farrell was confronted by Officer Kerrick and two other police. Accounts vary as to what happened next.
Police claim that Farrell charged them and shouted “Shoot me!” at the officers. Prosecutors say that Kerrick failed to properly identify himself, but instead trained his weapon’s laser sight on Farrell’s chest.
Kerrick fired four shots at Farrell, who then collapsed on to the officer. As he writhed and struggled on the ground, Kerrick fired eight more shots, killing the former college football player.
Defense attorney Michael Greene claims Farrell was going for the officer’s gun. He claimed in court, as usual whenever police murder innocent people, that Farrell was drunk and high on pot and acting irrationally because of an argument he’d had with his fiancee earlier in the day.
“This case is not about race. It never was about race. This case was about choices — Jonathan Ferrell’s bad choices,” Greene said in court.
However, toxicology reports do not support the defense team’s claims. Farrell’s blood alcohol level was within the legal limit and his system did not show any traces of marijuana.
By: David Ferguson