Thursday, August 28 2014 1:22 AM EDT2014-08-28 05:22:19 GMT
The search area for a missing Malaysian airliner in the southern Indian Ocean has been refined based on the latest analysis, while the investigation into how the plane came to crash cannot proceed until the...More >>
The search area for a missing Malaysian airliner in the southern Indian Ocean has been refined based on the latest analysis, while the investigation into how the plane came to crash cannot proceed until the wreckage and...More >>
Thursday, August 28 2014 12:33 AM EDT2014-08-28 04:33:15 GMT
A Butler County family can't believe that the man convicted of their loved one's death has been allowed to leave prison and work near where they live and where the crime happened. Bobby Ray McCombs brothersMore >>
A Butler County family can't believe that the man convicted of their loved one's death has been allowed to leave prison and work near where they live and where the crime happened.
Thursday, August 28 2014 12:21 AM EDT2014-08-28 04:21:34 GMT
Montgomery police and Montgomery Public Schools officials are responding to a video that's making the rounds on social media. The video shows a fight involving several students. Montgomery police confirmedMore >>
Montgomery police and Montgomery Public Schools officials are responding to videos that are being shared across social media. More >>
Thursday, August 28 2014 12:09 AM EDT2014-08-28 04:09:19 GMT
The City of Montgomery is working to revamp its web site and is asking for your help. The city has put together a survey looking for ways to make it more user friendly. City officials decided moreMore >>
The City of Montgomery is working to revamp its web site and is asking for your help.More >>
ALEXANDER CITY, AL (WSFA) -
It's a case that continues to make headlines- an officer-involved shooting death in Alexander City that claimed the life of a local man. The NAACP is now involved and a group of local clergymen are speaking out as well as they work to keep tensions in the community in check.
As questions and concerns continue to swirl around the shooting
death of 21-year-old Emerson Crayton Jr. by an Alexander City police officer
last month, local clergy members are taking a stand to quell some of the rising
unrest felt throughout their congregations. They've formed a coalition called
the Concerned African-Amercian Clergy of Tallapoosa and Coosa Counties.
The group held a press conference Friday night at Miracle Missionary Baptist Church in Alexander City. Members said their goal is to respect the process of the investigation into the deadly incident and respect the emotions in the community by providing stability and leadership.
"We must remain committed to a calm and peaceful response and the betterment of our community," said Melvin Ervin, pastor of Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church in Goodwater, AL and member of the coalition. "We're developing proposals and strategies to address this
tragedy and other lingering issues between the community and law enforcement.
After our plans and proposals are completed, we will sit down with area law
enforcement and government officials and concerned citizens to develop
proactive and preventive measures to reduce the likelihood of this type of
incident happening again."
"The community feelings have been high but they have been very calm
and very patient waiting on a ruling to come down. Thanks to the clergy and the
NAACP members who have diligently worked to help keep calm," added Sam Alexander, Tallapoosa Chapter NAACP President.
The shooting happened March 8 in the early morning hours at the Huddle House restaurant on Highway 280 in Alexander City.
According to a witness WSFA interviewed after the shooting, Emerson Crayton was trying to leave Huddle House after having a problem with employees when an officer was flagged down by a worker.
"I guess the police felt like he was trying to hurt somebody you know or whatever, but he wasn't," the witness told 12 News.
In the beginning, the Alexander City Police Department said an officer went to the Huddle House after a report of two men fighting and when the officer approached them, one of the men ran to his vehicle.
Police said Crayton started to leave and that he tried to run over the officer and that the officer, fearing for his life, shot and killed Crayton.
Thursday police Chief Willie Robinson acknowledged that statement about the police responding to a fight was false. According to the chief, the police report states an officer was already in the vicinity of the restaurant when an employee waved down the officer.
"The officer saw Mr. Crayton jump in his vehicle to leave because the owner had identified him as the cause of the disturbance inside the Huddle House. The officer went to Crayton's vehicle to try and talk to him and that's when he put the car in reverse and the officer ended up in front of the Crayton's car. According to the police report, that's when Mr. Crayton tried to run over the officer and the officer fired the shot," the report states, according to the chief.
The officer remains on paid leave. The Alabama Bureau of Investigation is handling the investigation.
"What happened here is worse than the Trayvon Martin killing by
George Zimmerman as far as I'm concerned. There's absolutely zero
justification. We have statements now, signed affidavits from three witnesses
and a fourth just about to have in hand. We have a claim ready to file against
the city of Alex City and the police officers that were involved and most
likely other officers higher up for the lack of training and we're looking at
other claims frankly of other people at Huddle House that were involved in
inciting this whole thing," said Julian McPhillips, the Crayton family's attorney.
Meanwhile, Crayton's family says the community rallying around
them has helped them cope with their loss.
"It's a tragic event for anyone who loses someone through something
like this but we're thankful for the community support. People of all
backgrounds have been very supportive to the family but seeing that they want
justice as well as we do, that makes it feel so much better as an individual
and for my family as well," said Mardracus Russell, Emerson Crayton's Brother.
As the local coalition
of clergy and the community wait for the results of the ABI's investigation
into the fatal shooting, NAACP officials say they're also requesting that
the FBI and Justice Department investigate the case.
"We're always concerned about possible violations when incidents
like this happen. That's why we want to make sure that all law enforcement and
all Justice Department look into the case and make sure that we get to the root
cause and what happened and who did what in this case," Alabama NAACP President Benard Simelton told WSFA.
12 East Delano Avenue
Montgomery, AL 36105