Wed October 23, 2013
Fiancee Of Shooting Victim Ferrell Wants CMPD To Release Dash-Cam Video
The fiancée of Jonathan Ferrell, the unarmed 24-year-old man killed by a police officer last month, wants the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department to release a dash-cam video of the incident in which he was shot 10 times.
But CMPD says the decision to release the video is no longer theirs.
Caché Heidel spoke softly, looked uncomfortable and made clear that she did not want to be at the Ritz-Carlton uptown as reporters waited for her to speak.
She says it's not fair that police released a 9-1-1 audio tape but not video from that night, because the audio only tells one side of the story in which a woman is afraid that Jonathan Ferrell is trying to break into her home.
But Heidel says the video, which she has seen once, leaves no doubt that the shooting was unjustified.
"You hear them say, 'Stop it'," Heidel says. "Literally milliseconds after that you hear the gunshots go off. Four shots, pause. Six shots, then another pause and then two more shots."
The 911 call was from a woman whose house Ferrell stopped at around 2 a.m. shortly after wrecking his car. Attorney Christopher Chestnut says the public needs another perspective of what happened that night, even though police charged the officer.
"The police department releases the 911 tape, where the caller is very upset, excited and frantic. OK. But that presents a certain characterization of the circumstances, of that environment," Chestnut says. "What can qualify that environment is the dash-cam. But they won't release the dash-cam."
When police officers arrived, Ferrell ran toward them. Officer Randall Kerrick fired twelve times, striking him ten times. Ferrell was unarmed.
CMPD says the decision on whether to release the dash-cam video will have to come from the state attorney general's office, which is now prosecuting the case.
In any case, Heidel says she believes Ferrell was at a disadvantage that night, because he's black.
"I feel like in a sense John was a little bit racially profiled," Heidel says. "Because he's a black man, 2 a.m. in the morning, kind of you know built stature, he's very lean, and that I think it was unjustified, what happened to him that night."
She said Ferrell, her "high school sweetheart," moved to Charlotte last year to live with her. He was making plans to transfer to Johnson C. Smith University. He was working two jobs – at Best Buy and at Dillard's – to save up money for school.