In an unprecedented move (for him), District Attorney Peter Gilchrist has asked the SBI to investigate Charlotte's latest "death-by-police."
In the past 10 years, 36 people have been shot by a police officer, but this is the first time Gilchrist has asked the state for help. Perhaps Gilchrist has finally gotten the message that people are fed up with trigger-happy police "protection."
More likely, though, considering his history of ignoring police-caused deaths, Gilchrist is responding to pressure from the rising level of tensions and anger in the city's African American community over fatal police shootings. Three people have died at the hands of Charlotte police officers in the last seven months.
Citizens were already disturbed by the death of 17-year-old Darryl Wayne Turner, who died after being Tasered by a police officer in March (Turner's autopsy results, by the way, still aren't ready). The latest tragedy, the May 20 fatal shooting in the back of 21-year-old Aaron Winchester by Officer David Jester, a 13-year-veteran, was the last straw.
It remains to be seen how quickly the SBI investigation will proceed - and whether it will be enough to satisfy increasingly aggravated citizens who want answers.