The family of a teen shot dead at a bank ATM Wednesday night says Antonio Lacy made a mistake, but he was not a cold, hard criminal.
The 19-year-old was killed after police say he tried to rob an off-duty Pitt County deputy sheriff at the State Employees Credit Union on Charles Boulevard. Sheriff Mac Manning says Deputy Zackary Odom was defending himself when he shot the teen.
"It was a bad decision made on Tony's part that cost him his life, which was totally out of character for him," says Rolette Lacy, the dead teen's aunt.
The family talked to WITN reporter Dave Marcheskie Friday morning. They say they're at a loss as to why Lacy tried to rob the deputy, a man they do not blame. "Officer Odom responded in a way that we don't find him at fault for anything as a family," the aunt told WITN.
Lacy graduated from Beaufort County's Northside High School in 2008. Kelvin Davis, his cousin, says they were more like brothers. "He should've known that he could've come to me for anything. Me, my brother, my mother, grandma...anybody in our family would've helped him out."
While they don't blame the deputy, family members we spoke were upset with the way some things were presented. "It bothers the family that Sheriff Mac Manning presented him the way he did. That's not how it was," said Rolette Lacy. "How they advertised him on T.V. yesterday, making it like he was a hardened criminal...that wasn't the case," Kelvin Davis told WITN.
The family now is waiting for the medical examiner to release the body so they can make funeral arrangements.
The SBI is investigating the shooting, which is standard procedure when a law enforcement officer is involved in a shooting.
Authorities say an off-duty deputy sheriff, with less than four months on the job, shot and killed a would-be robber.
The State Bureau of Investigation tells WITN News that the dead man has been identified as Antonio Lacy of Greenville. The Medical Examiner's Office in Greenville wouldn't say how many times Lacy was shot, but did say the 19-year-old was shot in the chest.
Greenville police say Lacy approached the off-duty Pitt County deputy at an automated teller machine at the State Employees Credit Union at 2296 Charles Blvd. around 10:30 p.m. Wednesday. A press release says when the suspect tried to rob the deputy at gunpoint, the deputy fired his gun at the suspect.
Sheriff Mac Manning identified the deputy as Zackary Odom. Manning said Odom is fresh out of the academy, and has been with his department since August.
Lacy was transported to Pitt County Memorial Hospital, but police say he died there. The deputy was not injured.
The sheriff says the deputy was in his vehicle at the ATM and noticed someone coming up from behind him. Manning says he used the same ATM the night before.
As is standard procedure when a law enforcement officer is involved, the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigations is handling the investigation.
Court records show Lacy had a January 15th court date for traffic charges in Pitt County. He was charged with having no operators license and driving by person less than 21 years old after consuming alcohol or drugs.