Bodycam video shows that Andrew Brown Jr. didn't drive into or toward deputies who shot him dead, according to a lawyer permitted to see some of the footage. Police and prosecutors had earlier claimed otherwise to justify the man's slaying. Authorities in Pasquotank County, North Carolina, backed by a court ruling, have still not released the footage.
Chance Lynch, a lawyer who viewed the footage in private with Brown's family, said Brown was sitting in his stationary car with his hands on the wheel when the first of numerous shots was fired. Family members had previously seen about 20 seconds of the video but were shown approximately 18 minutes on Tuesday under a judge's order. The family's lawyers say the footage contradicts statements by the local district attorney, who said in court that deputies didn't start firing until after Brown's vehicle struck them twice. Lynch's description aligns with what another family attorney said after seeing the shorter clip.
This would expain the usefulness of keeping the footage under wraps as long as possible: it's worse than even the victim's family imagined. We haven't seen it, obviously, but it sounds like officers reached out to touch the vehicle to justify what came next (compare the "stop resisting!" game).