CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Another American city has been rocked by violent rioting in the wake of a police shooting, as residents of Charlotte faced a night of chaos Tuesday night and are bracing for more.
The rioting followed the shooting Tuesday of Keith Lamont Scott, who was getting out of a vehicle when he was killed. Police said he had a gun and posed a threat.
Here are five things you should know:
1. The officer who shot him was black. Scott, who is black, was shot by Brentley Vinson, a black police officer.
2. Social media sparked the riot. The violence began after a woman, claiming to be the daughter of Keith Lamont Scott, posted a video on Facebook. In the video the woman claimed a Charlotte police officer shot and killed a disabled man while he was sitting in a car reading a book, waiting for the school bus to drop his child off.
The claims were unverified, but they were enough to launch the riot. The video received 521,000 views in in the few hours after it was posted on Facebook, the Charlotte Observer reported.
3. Rioters deliberately targeted vehicles on Interstate 85. They blocked the freeway, threw rocks, bottles and other objects off overpasses onto cars and reportedly injured motorists. The Observer reported that at least three 18-wheelers were looted and burned on the freeway. Some motorists were trapped in their cars on the interstate for hours, as traffic backed up.
4. A Walmart store was looted. Looters smashed their way into the store and stole merchandise, including electronics, before police arrived, The Observer reported. Workers at the store tried to protect it by blocking the entrances with crates.
5. Business are being warned there might be more violence. “We are concerned that there may be similar protests tonight and beyond in our city,” the Chamber wrote. “We must prepare for this potential as ‘one Charlotte’ by standing together in a way that demonstrates our support of peaceful protests, while also ensuring the safety of law enforcement officers and all citizens.”
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