Prosecutor to discuss probe into Elizabeth City shooting

Andrew Brown Jr's son Jha'Rod Ferebee speaks during during a press conference outside the Pasqoutank County Public Safety building in Elizabeth City, N.C., Tuesday, May 11, 2021, after family of Andrew Brown Jr. viewed about 20 minutes of video from the police shooting death of Brown in April. Family attorneys said the longer, redacted video showed Brown did nothing to threaten or provoke deputies and his hands were visible when they approached his car. (Travis Long/The News & Observer via AP)

ELIZABETH CITY — A North Carolina prosecutor says he’s ready to discuss the results of a state investigation into the fatal shooting of a black man by sheriff’s deputies.

In a written statement, District Attorney Andrew Womble announced a news conference for Tuesday morning to talk about what the State Bureau of Investigation found in its probe of the death of Andrew Brown Jr.

The statement didn’t elaborate, and Womble didn’t respond to an email asking if he would announce a decision about filing criminal charges against the deputies.

A bureau spokeswoman didn’t immediately respond to an email Monday asking for confirmation that the investigation is complete.

Deputies attempting to serve drug-related search and arrest warrants shot and killed Brown outside his Elizabeth City home on April 21. Three deputies involved in the shooting remain on leave, while four others who were at the scene were reinstated after the sheriff said they didn’t fire their weapons.

An independent autopsy released by the family found that Brown was hit by bullets five times, including once in the back of the head. Lawyers for Brown’s family who watched body camera footage say that it shows Brown was not armed and that he didn’t drive toward deputies or pose a threat to them. Womble has previously disagreed in court, saying that Brown struck deputies twice with his car before any shots were fired.

The sheriff has said his deputies weren’t injured.

The shooting sparked protests over multiple weeks by demonstrators calling for the public release of body camera footage. While authorities have shown footage to Brown’s family, a judge refused to release the video publicly pending the investigation bureau’s inquiry.