CHARLOTTE‚ NC (WBTV) – Police Chief Rodney Monroe says a police officer is in custody Saturday night, charged in the fatal shooting of an unarmed man in East Mecklenburg County.
In his second of two news conferences on the incident, Chief Monroe said a warrant was signed for the arrest of officer Randall Kerrick, after he turned himself in.
The arrest stems from an incident early Saturday morning on the 7500 block of Reedy Creek Road. Police said a woman opened the front door of her house, after she heard knocking, thinking it was her husband coming back home from work. After realizing the man at the door was not her husband, the woman closed the door and called 9-1-1, police said. The man then stood outside the door for a period of time, and tried to get the attention of the homeowner.
Hickory Grove patrol officers arrived at the woman’s home on a breaking and entering call. The officers discovered Jonathan Ferrell near the caller’s home, matching the description she gave. Police said Ferrell approached three officers and ran towards them. Officer Thornell Little deployed his CMPD-issued Taser at Ferrell but it was unsuccessful. Investigators said Ferrell continued to run towards Officer Randall Kerrick who had his service weapon drawn. Officer Kerrick discharged several rounds striking Ferrell multiple times according to police. Ferrell was pronounced deceased on scene by MEDIC.
CMPD issued a statement Saturday night, saying evidence revealed Officer Kerrick’s use of force was excessive and fit the criteria for involuntary manslaughter. Police say their investigation shows Kerrick did not have to fire his weapon during the incident.
“Our hearts go to Ferrell family, quite naturally, as well as the many members of the CMPD family. This is never something easy,” Chief Monroe said. Monroe also said it was with a heavy heart and significant regrets that it has come to this. But says he believes the facts led to this conclusion.
The family of the victim, Jonathan Ferrell, has been notified of his death.
The investigation revealed that Ferrell was not armed with a weapon.
Investigators found a wrecked vehicle was located down an embankment in the woods nearby and believe it was operated by Ferrell.
Detectives are working to determine if Ferrell was trying to get assistance at the residence where the 9-1-1 call was placed. Saturday night, Chief Monroe says he still does not know why Ferrell was in the area.
“I never see anything like this go down…this is a very good neighborhood..to hear that happened it’s definitely crazy,” a neighbor told WBTV.
Friends and family took to social media Saturday night asking for privacy and prayers but also expressing shock and sadness. One friend called Ferrell a happy and goofy guy.
Farrell, a former football player at Florida A&M, was remembered in photos wearing his Number 28 jersey.
Officer Little and a third police officer at the scene, Officer Adam Neal, have been placed on paid Administrative Leave pending the outcome of the shooting investigation.
Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call 704-432-TIPS and speak directly to a Homicide Unit Detective.