Prosecutors will seek an indictment against Randall Kerrick, 27, the North Carolina police officer accused of fatally shooting Jonathan Ferrell, 24, who was unarmed when he approached Kerrick for help after a car accident on the night of Sept. 14, 2013, reports the Chicago Tribune.
Ferrell, a former Florida A&M football player who had recently moved to North Carolina to be with his fiancee, was in a serious car crash and after kicking out his back window, walked to a nearby cluster of homes and knocked on the first door for help. A woman answered the door thinking it was her husband and immediately slammed it in Ferrell’s face before calling 911.
On the 911 tape released by the city, the woman can be heard sobbing to the dispatcher, begging them to hurry and telling them that her baby was in the house with her.
“He’s in his bed. I don’t know what to do. I can’t believe I opened the door…Please don’t let him get my baby,” she cried.
Kerrick was one of the responding officers and as they approached, Ferrell ran towards them for help. One of the officers allegedly tried to stop him with a Taser, but Ferrell continued to approach. That is when Kerrick shot him 12 times, 10 of the bullets piercing his body.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Rodney Monroe said that even if Ferrell didn’t stop running toward Kerrick, deadly force wasn’t justified. Ferrell was unarmed, and both Monroe and Ferrell family attorney Chris Chestnut, who watched the dashboard video of the shooting, said that was clear. Chestnut said Ferrell had his hands outstretched, and they were empty.
“I can tell you this is what I saw: Absolutely, unequivocally, there were no words said, period, from any of the officers prior to Jonathan being hit with a stun gun, Chestnut said.
“He’s not yelling at them. He’s not threatening them,” he said.
At one point, an officer yelled “get on the ground,” but it was hard to tell if it was right before or right after the first shot was fired, he said.
“But I can tell you that those shots were in such close proximity that Jonathan never had an opportunity to reply. He had bullets in him before he could ever hit the ground. So there was not sufficient warning. No one ever told him to stop. He didn’t have time to react,” he said.
The results of Ferrell‘s toxicology report prove that he was not under the influence of alcohol or any drugs when he was gunned down by Kerrick.
He autopsy report concluded that cause of death was multiple gunshots wounds to the chest.
“This confirms everything we’ve been saying since the day that Jonathan was killed: That this was an All-American guy who gave a friend a ride home and was just trying to get home himself when he had a car accident. And when he was runs to the officer for help, the officer shoots him 10 times,” said family attorney Chris Chestnut in a statement to The Associated Press.
Kerrick is still on paid leave pending the conclusion of the police department’s investigation.
The case against Kerrick will go before a grand jury on Jan. 21.
According to a spokesman for the Ferrell family attorney, the grieving family is expected to announce plans to file a civil lawsuit on Tuesday against Kerrick and the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department.