Jonathan Ferrell, Unarmed Former College Football Player, Shot to Death By Police Officer

by at . Comments

An unarmed man seeking help after a car crash over the weekend was shot 10 times by the Charlotte police officer who's now charged in his death.

Officer Randall Kerrick fired 12 times at 24-year-old Jonathan Ferrell early Saturday while responding to a breaking and entering call, reports say.

Ten of the bullets hit the former Florida A&M University football player. Kerrick was charged with voluntary manslaughter and will appear in court 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 likely unfamiliar with the area he was driving when he crashed early Saturday. 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. "You took a piece of my heart that I can never get back."

Police determined the shooting was excessive and charged Kerrick.

A police statement Saturday said the investigation showed that "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 early Saturday morning.

Police Chief Rodney Monroe said after the fact that the wreck was so severe that Ferrell would have had to climb out of the back window to escape.

Jonathan 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.

Monroe said he didn't think the unarmed Ferrell made threats or tried to rob the woman, but officers responded to the breaking and entering call.

They found Ferrell nearby. He ran toward the officers, who tried to stop him with a Taser. Police said he continued to run toward them when Kerrick fired.

He hit Ferrell 10 times. Ferrell died at the scene.

An attorney for Ferrell's family, Chris Chestnut, applauded police for charging Kerrick and condemning the "shoot first and ask questions later" actions.

Tags: ,