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Charlotte protests: Here’s what the violent unrest looks like after fatal police shooting

‘Police just lost control of the city’: journalist describes chaos during Charlotte protests
WATCH ABOVE: Photojournalist describes chaos during Charlotte protests

Violent protests carpeted downtown Charlotte, North Carolina for a second night Wednesday after the fatal shooting of Keith Lamont Scott, forcing the state governor to declare a state of emergency.

What started as a peaceful vigil for Scott,43, a black man who was fatally shot by a police officer Tuesday, turned into an angry march with protesters disputing authorities’ official account of how the man died during his interaction with police.

Protesters stop at an intersection blocked by bicycle officers along Trade Street in Charlotte, N.C., Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2016.
Protesters stop at an intersection blocked by bicycle officers along Trade Street in Charlotte, N.C., Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2016. Jeff Siner/The Charlotte Observer via AP

According to the Associated Press, the march turned violent after a protester was shot and wounded as marchers charged riot police. City officials said the protestor was not shot by law enforcement.

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A protester is taken into custody by Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officers in North Carolina on Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2016.
A protester is taken into custody by Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officers in North Carolina on Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2016. Jeff Siner/The Charlotte Observer via AP

Speaking with Global’s The Morning Show, freelance photojournalist Marcus DiPaola described the scene after “police just lost control of the city.”

Debris falls upon Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officers and protesters as officers began to push demonstrators from the intersection near the Epicentre in Charlotte, N.C. Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2016.
Debris falls upon Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officers and protesters as officers began to push demonstrators from the intersection near the Epicentre in Charlotte, N.C. Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2016. Jeff Siner/The Charlotte Observer via AP

“The night started out pretty peacefully with protesters just hanging out in a city park and talking to each other,” DiPaola explained. “But, it got very nasty very fast when they moved downtown and there were so many teargas grenades and flash grenades and pepper balls being shot.

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A protester walks in front of CMPD officers in riot gear with a sign reading “All Lives Matter We Are 1” in Charlotte, N.C. Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2016.
A protester walks in front of CMPD officers in riot gear with a sign reading “All Lives Matter We Are 1” in Charlotte, N.C. Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2016. Jeff Siner/The Charlotte Observer via AP

“There was no way for anybody to really take off their gas masks if they had one or even try and breath if they didn’t have one. It was complete chaos,” the photojournalist said.

CMPD officers in riot gear block the intersection near the Epicentre in Charlotte, N.C. Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2016.
CMPD officers in riot gear block the intersection near the Epicentre in Charlotte, N.C. Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2016. Jeff Siner/The Charlotte Observer via AP

Authorities said Scott was holding a handgun and was shot after refusing multiple demands to drop it. Scott’s family and at least one witness insist the man was holding a book when he was fatally shot.

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Police fire teargas as protestors converge on downtown following Tuesday’s police shooting of Keith Lamont Scott in Charlotte, N.C., Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2016.
Police fire teargas as protestors converge on downtown following Tuesday’s police shooting of Keith Lamont Scott in Charlotte, N.C., Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2016. AP Photo/Gerry Broome

DiPaola said people were smashing windows and assaulting others, including journalists.

People gather in front of the Ritz-Carlton in uptown Charlotte, NC during a protest of the police shooting of Keith Scott, September 21, 2016.
People gather in front of the Ritz-Carlton in uptown Charlotte, NC during a protest of the police shooting of Keith Scott, September 21, 2016. Reuters/Jason Miczek

“It was complete chaos. The police just lost control of the city,” DiPaola said.

People surround a shooting victim in uptown Charlotte, NC during a protest of the police shooting of Keith Scott, September 21, 2016.
People surround a shooting victim in uptown Charlotte, NC during a protest of the police shooting of Keith Scott, September 21, 2016. Reuters/Jason Miczek

Authorities have not released any video footage of Scott’s death, causing anger and demands for its release from protesters.

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A spokesman for the Charlotte Fraternal Order of Police told CNN on Thursday he had seen video from the scene showing Scott holding a gun, Reuters reported.

Blood covers the pavement where a person was shot in uptown Charlotte, NC during a protest of the police shooting of Keith Scott, September 21, 2016.
Blood covers the pavement where a person was shot in uptown Charlotte, NC during a protest of the police shooting of Keith Scott, September 21, 2016. Reuters/Jason Miczek

Gov. Pat McCrory requested the National Guard after declaring the state of an emergency and a curfew is being discussed for Thursday evening.

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Two women embrace while looking at a police officer in uptown Charlotte, NC during a protest of the police shooting of Keith Scott, September 21, 2016.
Two women embrace while looking at a police officer in uptown Charlotte, NC during a protest of the police shooting of Keith Scott, September 21, 2016. Reuters/Jason Miczek

“The one thing about the past two nights is that it’s been very disorganized on both the part of police and protesters,” DiPaola said. “Last night, for most of the night I could really only see one line of riot police, about 20 people. It was a very small presence. Of course more showed up later on during the night but it was a very small police presence.

Police hold their lines in uptown Charlotte, NC during a protest of the police shooting of Keith Scott, September 21, 2016.
Police hold their lines in uptown Charlotte, NC during a protest of the police shooting of Keith Scott, September 21, 2016. Reuters/Jason Miczek

“I think that that level of disorganization, both on the police part and protesters part, was a good thing and I think that level of disorganization led to fewer injuries,” DiPaola said.

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The photojournalist speculated that after Wednesday’s unrest, the protesters will reorganize and the city can expect another demonstration for a third night in a row.

Source: Graphiq