Unarmed accident victim shot 10 times by N.C. officer
CHARLOTTE — An unarmed man seeking help after a car crash during the weekend was shot 10 times by the Charlotte police officer who's now charged in his death, investigators said Monday.
A police news release said Officer Randall Kerrick fired 12 times at 24-year-old Jonathan A. Ferrell early Saturday while responding to a breaking and entering call. Ten of the bullets hit the former Florida A&M University football player.
Kerrick was charged with voluntary manslaughter and is scheduled for a first court appearance on Tuesday.
At a news conference, family members said that Ferrell had moved to North Carolina to be with his fiancee about a year ago and was working two jobs. They said he was probably unfamiliar with the area where he was driving when he crashed.
Ferrell's mother said she was praying for Kerrick.
“I truly forgive him. I pray for him. And I pray that he gets off the police force,” Georgia Ferrell said.
Police charged Kerrick on Saturday. A statement said the investigation showed “Kerrick did not have a lawful right to discharge his weapon during this encounter.”
The deadly encounter unfolded after police said the car Ferrell was driving crashed into trees off a northeast Charlotte road. Police Chief Rodney Monroe has said the wreck was so severe that Ferrell would have had to climb out of the back window to escape.
Ferrell apparently walked about a half-mile to the nearest house and was “banging on the door viciously” to attract attention, Monroe said. Thinking it was her husband coming home late from work, the woman who lives there opened the door. When she saw Ferrell, she shut it and called police about 2:30 a.m., Monroe said.
Monroe said he didn't think Ferrell made threats.
Officers responding to the breaking and entering call found Ferrell nearby. Ferrell ran toward the officers, who tried to stop him with a Taser. Police said he continued to run toward them when Kerrick fired. Ferrell died at the scene.