By Mark Jurkowitz | Outer Banks Voice on April 27, 2021
Update April 27 at 6:20 pm: After Governor Roy Cooper issued a statement calling for the appointment of a special prosecutor in the Andrew Brown Jr. case, District Attorney Andrew Womble, who is currently the prosecutor in the case, emailed this statement.
“I look forward to the hearing ordered by Judge Jerry R. Tillett and scheduled for Wednesday, April 28, 2021 regarding the petitions filed requesting release of the law enforcement body worn camera footage surrounding the death of Andrew Brown, Jr. on April 21, 2021. The duties of the District Attorney are statutorily spelled out in NCGS 7A-61 and they include but are not limited to charging decisions regarding potential criminal conduct within the prosecutorial district. I stand ready willing and able to fulfill my statutory obligations and well as my Oath of Office for the people of the First Judicial District.”
Update April 27 at 5 pm: This afternoon, Governor Roy Cooper put out this statement calling for a special prosecutor in the Andrew Brown case.
April 27 at 1:45 pm: As tensions continue to build over the April 21 shooting of Andrew Brown Jr. by Pasquotank County Sheriff’s Deputies, Elizabeth City has imposed a curfew on its residents and the FBI has launched an investigation into the shooting.
Under the curfew, which starts April 27, residents should be off the streets between the hours of 8 p.m. to 6 a.m., with exceptions made only for traveling to and from work and emergencies. The curfew is in effect until further notice. Thus far, protests over the Brown shooting have been peaceful.
At the same time, the FBI’s Charlotte Field Office announced that it has opened a federal civil rights investigation into the police-involved shooting that occurred while deputies were trying to serve Brown with a felony drug warrant.
A statement emailed to the Voice by an FBI spokesperson said that, “Agents will work closely with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina and the Civil Rights Division at the Department of Justice to determine whether federal laws were violated. As this is an ongoing investigation, we cannot comment further.”
Earlier in the day, 11 a.m., a group of attorneys representing Brown’s family held a press conference to reveal the results of private autopsy report produced by Dr. Brent Hall of Pathology Associates in Boone, NC.
According to attorney Wayne Kendall, the report indicates that there were “five penetrating bullet wounds to the body of Andrew Brown Jr.” Four of them, Kendall said, struck Brown’s right arm as his hands were placed on the steering wheel in his vehicle, and the fatal shot to the back of his head occurred “as he was leaving the site trying to evade being shot at.” “The time of death,” Kendall continued, “was within minutes after this particular gunshot wound to the back of his head.”
Another attorney at the press conference, Harry Daniels, called the shooting an “execution,” adding that, “Law enforcement in this country cannot be judge, jury and executioner.”
Speakers also continued to call for the release of the body camera footage of the shooting. Brown’s family harshly criticized county officials after they were allowed to view only 20 seconds of that video on April 26. And at the end of the April 27 press conference, attorney Ben Crump led the crowd in a chant of “Don’t say more. Show the video.”
In a recorded statement released on the evening of April 26, Pasquotank County Chief Deputy Daniel Fogg announced that County Attorney R. Michael Cox has filed a court motion to publicly release the video camera footage.