North Carolina Grand Jury Declines to Indict Cop Who Killed Jonathan Ferrell

[Content Note: Racism; police brutality; guns; death.]

Jonathan Farrell is the 24-year-old black man who was fatally shot ten times by a white police officer after Ferrell crashed his car and sought help at a local residence. The officer, Randall Kerrick, was put on unpaid leave from the Charlotte-Mecklenburg force and charged with voluntary manslaughter. A grand jury was convened to consider the charge, and—despite the fact that, as the saying goes, a good prosecutor can get a grand jury to indict a ham sandwich—the grand jury declined to indict Kerrick, "instead asking prosecutors to submit a lesser charge."
"We the Grand Jury respectfully request that the district attorney submit a bill of indictment to a lesser-included or related offense," the jury's foreperson said in a hand-written note released by the clerk of court's office late in the afternoon.
The Charlotte Observer calls it "a rare and unexpected move," which is the understatement of the year.
Steve Ward, a retired prosecutor who worked for 25 years under former District Attorney Peter Gilchrist, said he's never heard of a grand jury requesting a lesser charge.

Grand juries meet in private. Attorneys on either side are not permitted to attend. In the Kerrick case, the evidence was presented by Charlotte-Mecklenburg police investigator Edwin Morales and Scott Williams of the State Bureau of Investigation.

The fact that the jury chose not to indict is extremely rare, Ward said. Of the thousands of cases his office sent to a grand jury every year, only a few came back without indictments, he said.

"I'm talking about less than 10 a year."
I can't even imagine what kind of bullshit was presented to the grand jury that they refused to indict on what is an eminently reasonable charge of voluntary manslaughter.

Here's where it stands now: "The defense claimed victory. The attorney general said his office planned to bring the charges against Kerrick before the grand jury again because some members of Tuesday's panel were missing. ...In Mecklenburg, Ward said, two grand juries are empaneled at a given time, and they serve on alternating weeks for six months. That means if prosecutors wanted a new grand jury to hear their case, it could happen as early as Monday."

I am beyond the fucking beyond.

My contempt for this alleged pursuit of justice so far is immeasurable.

[H/T to Shaker Lurkerina, in comments, who saw it at Global Grind.]

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