CMPD releases body, dash cam videos in shooting death of 18-year-old

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department released body camera and dash camera videos Thursday showing the deadly officer-involved shooting of 18-year-old Rodney Smith.

A judge had ordered the release of the full and unedited video from the dash and body cams that captured the police shooting in north Charlotte last June.

[PAST ARTICLE: Teenager killed in officer-involved shooting fired at police, CMPD says]

It marked just the second time a judge has used a new law to order the release of police video.

The police department posted the YouTube videos on their website Thursday. Due to graphic content, Channel 9 is not posting the body cam videos at this time.

In the video, officers order the man to drop a gun at least 15 times before gunfire erupts. Police said the suspect fired the first shot, then they returned fire with 22 rounds.

Scroll down to watch both dash cam videos (WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT)

(Officer Bell's dash cam)

(Officer Kiefer's dash cam)

Last June, officers shot and killed Smith after he shot a man on a CATS bus. The district attorney cleared the two officers involved of any wrong doing.

When Channel 9 spoke with Smith's family this week, they said they still don't understand why the officers fired their weapons 22 times.

On Tuesday, a judge ruled there is a compelling amount of public interest to support the release of all the footage.

Smith's family had only been allowed to see photos and short clips of the shooting but they had never seen the full video until Thursday.

Eyewitness News investigative reporter Paul Boyd was in court 12 days ago during the fight to release the body camera video to the public.

Boyd watched the police video Thursday with Smith's mother and other family members, who don't believe the video shows Smith firing a gun.

“I believe you just shot my son down like a dog,” Lucresha Woodard said. “That's what I believe. And that's from my heart.”

Investigators disagree.

"In this case, the evidence supports the conclusion that Smith pointed and fired a gun at Officer Tryon and consequently, the officers were justified in using deadly force to stop the attack and defend themselves," District Attorney Andrew Murray said.

“I want them to reopen the case and investigate more, because you told us lies,” Woodard said.

Police Chief Kerr Putney released the following statement:

"The heroic actions of these officers very likely protected other members of our community from additional harm. This is yet another illustration of the commitment of our officers who serve selflessly to keep our community safe."

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