CHARLOTTE -- Authorities in Charlotte tried to quell public anger Wednesday after a police officer shot a black man, but a dusk prayer vigil turned into a march that ended with a protester critically wounded by gunfire and the governor declared a state of emergency in the city.
The man was not shot by police who had massed in riot gear to keep the marchers outside an upscale downtown hotel, Charlotte officials announced on Twitter. City officials originally announced the man was dead but later reversed that statement and said he was on life support. 2 other civilians and 7 officers were also hurt with non-life threatening injuries.
The second night of violent protests added Charlotte to the list of U.S. cities that have erupted in violence over the death of a black man at the hands of police.
The killing inflamed racial tensions in a city that seemed to have steered clear of the troubles that engulfed other places.
Gov. Pat McCrory announced late Wednesday he was accepting a request from Charlotte's police chief, declaring a state of emergency and calling in the National Guard and state troopers to help restore order and protect downtown.
With officials refusing to release any video of the Tuesday shooting of 43-year-old Keith Lamont Scott, anger built as two starkly different versions emerged: Police say Scott disregarded repeated demands to drop his gun, while neighborhood residents say he was holding a book, not a weapon, as he waited for his son to get off the school bus.
CATS has shut down streetcar service until Thursday, and the Lynx Blue Line is operating only to Carson Station. The Charlotte Transportation Center is now closed. Operations have moved to the Carson Station.