D.A. Says Cop Justified In Shooting UNC Fraternity President

A North Carolina prosecutor has concluded that a police officer was justified in the fatal shooting of a University of North Carolina fraternity president after a highway stop in August.

Randolph County District Attorney Garland Yates said Friday the student had told a 911 dispatcher he had a pistol and hid his hands despite police orders. Yates said the officer fired after 21-year-old Courtland Smith suddenly drew his hand from behind his back while holding a black object. Investigators found a cell phone but no gun.

The DA said Archdale police officer Jeremy Flinchum held his fire until Smith was just 10 feet away.

Recordings of Smith's earlier 911 call reveal he told authorities he was trying to kill himself, had been drinking and was carrying a gun.


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  • by C on Dec 5, 2009 at 12:17 PM
    G: It's obvious you hate police officers.It's also obvious that you have no idea of what you're talking about.The student told the dispatcher he had a gun.He was approached by a policeman who had been told the guy had a gun.The student refused orders to show his hands and then deliberately made a move consistent with reaching for a weapon,culminating in pointing an object at the officer as he would a gun.Given the totality of the circumstances,the officer had no choice but to defend himself from what he reasonably believed to be an imminent threat to his own life.The student essentially committed suicide and used an innocent officer as his means of self-destruction.Furthermore,officers are trained to shoot to STOP an offender,not wound them.If the offender dies later,that's their own fault.If you know how the police should do their jobs,become an officer yourself and show them how it's done.If you're unwilling to do that,your opinions are as worthless as they are misguided.
  • by g Location: coast on Dec 5, 2009 at 08:23 AM
    Thanks to all, I thought I was the only sane one reading this blog. That sting you haters feel is the truth. Not near as hot as that bullet that killed that boy.
  • by g Location: coast on Dec 5, 2009 at 08:20 AM
    I guess the imment use was he was gonna beat someone to death with his sell phone. 10 feet away he could of wounded the guy. Hate all you want, guy shot and killed an unarmed individual. Could've stopped him with pepper spray. If he's that scared he shouldn't be in possession of a firearm, period.
  • by to all on Dec 4, 2009 at 07:42 PM
    It is their job to put their life on the line. They know what they signed up for. Little pay for you life. G is not an idiot he is telling the truth.
  • by g-hater #2 Location: Washington on Dec 4, 2009 at 07:09 PM
    to "G", your an idiot, maybe you should call the police and tell them tou've got a gun. If we got rid of people that think like you the world would be a better place.And maybe my taxes would be a little cheaper!!!!!!!!!
  • by brother blue Location: G-ville on Dec 4, 2009 at 06:17 PM
    ...and for those who don't understand "imminent use" that means "fixing to happen". We don't get paid to die for society, I LOVE my FAMILY, and I will go home at the end of my shift if I have any choice in the matter. The dead frat boy made his choice, the Officer did his job. Case closed.
  • by brother blue Location: G-ville on Dec 4, 2009 at 05:53 PM
    This is for all those who wish to understand the written law, NCGS 15A-401(d)(2) dont just take my typing, google it. "A law-enforcement officer is justified in using deadly physical force upon another person for a purpose specified in subdivision (1) of this subsection only when it is or appears to be reasonably necessary thereby: a. To defend himself or a third person from what he reasonably believes to be the use or imminent use of deadly physical force; b. To effect an arrest or to prevent the escape from custody of a person who he reasonably believes is attempting to escape by means of a deadly weapon, or who by his conduct or any other means indicates that he presents an imminent threat of death or serious physical injury to others unless apprehended without delay; or c. To prevent the escape of a person from custody imposed upon him as a result of conviction for a felony."
  • by To g Location: Greenville on Dec 4, 2009 at 05:46 PM
    Apparently you just hate cops. The officer acted just as he should have. He was threatened with the use of deadly force. The victim in this case should not have told the dispatcher that he had a gun and he should have done as he was told by the officer. While this is really sad for all involved, but the blame for the outcome rests solely with the victim in this case.
  • by g Location: coast on Dec 4, 2009 at 04:26 PM
    You can call me ignorant all you want, what textbook is it in that you are justfied giving a death sentence to someone for being drunk and beligerant? Say whatever you have to to make youself feel better but homicide is homicide. From where I'm standing a cop, (supposedly a trained professional) got a free pass for killing someone. I feel sorry for his folks, a great loss.
  • by Anonymous on Dec 4, 2009 at 02:15 PM
    Of course. They ALWAYS say that but is it TRUE.
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