Welcome to Africanews

Please select your experience

Watch Live



North Carolina business owner reflects on police shooting

Copyright © africanews


Ernest Banks, 65, has been doing business in Elizabeth City, North Carolina, since he was 16.

A Black Lives Matter sign is now displayed in the window outside his downtown shoe repair shop.

The fatal shooting of Andrew Brown Jr. by sheriff's deputies has sent shock waves through this small, majority Black city in the state's rural northeastern corner.

Despite holding an important place in African American history in the 19th and 20th centuries, Elizabeth City seemed too close-knit and too out-of-the-way to become a flashpoint in the 21st, some residents say.

That changed when Brown, 42, was shot by Pasquotank County sheriff's deputies serving drug-related search and arrest warrants at his house on April 21.

Brown, who was Black, was behind the wheel of his car when he was shot five times, including in the back of the head, according to an independent autopsy commissioned by his family.

Police camera footage has yet to be made public or shown in its entirety to Brown's family.

Banks has participated in peaceful protests, with other marchers demanding release of the video and police reform.

View more