CHARLOTTE,N.C. — Mecklenburg County District Attorney Spencer Merriweather III says he wants the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation to investigate all officer-involved shootings moving forward.
The new policy will be enacted after an appropriate protocol is developed to address operational concerns surrounding the immediate aftermath of officer-involved shootings.
After the SBI completes the investigation, they will deliver the findings to the District Attorney’s Office to determine if criminal charges will be filed.
Currently, every police Department in Mecklenburg County, other than the CMPD, already turns officer-involved shooting investigations over to the SBI.
“CMPD has conducted professional and extraordinarily thorough investigations of shootings involving the department’s officers, and the District Attorney’s Office has been confident in the integrity of those investigations,” says DA Merriweather. “Nevertheless, just as we counsel our prosecutors and staff against the appearance of a conflict of interest, we must do what we can to ensure we avoid perceived conflict in these investigations whenever possible. The criminal justice system cannot – and should not – function without public confidence.”