PASQUOTANK COUNTY, N.C. — A Pasquotank County judge has filed a court order that would allow Andrew Brown Jr.'s family to watch more police body camera footage showing Brown's death.
During a hearing last week, Superior Court Judge Jeffery Foster moved to disclose the videos to the family. He filed that order on Friday, May 7, nine days after making that ruling.
According to the order, the five Pasquotank County Sheriff's Office videos include close to two hours of video of the shooting, Brown's death, and the ensuing response.
The Brown family and one family attorney will able to watch about 19 minutes, per Foster's order. He said the remaining 100 minutes of footage does not contain video of Brown and is "not appropriate for disclosure at this time."
He struck down a request to release the footage to the public. It's a decision he will reconsider within the next month once the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation completes its probe into Brown's death.
Judge Foster's order cited that the body camera videos can be disclosed to Brown's family within the next 10 days but they must be prepared and edited with blurs of deputies' faces.
In a statement on Friday afternoon, Pasquotank Sheriff Tommy Wooten said the family would be allowed to see the video on Tuesday, May 11.
"It’s a step in the right direction," said Brown family attorney Harry Daniels. "We still are seeking to review all, unredacted versions of the video."
The family and their attorneys have already been allowed to view 20 seconds of redacted footage. They call Brown's death an "execution."
Andrew Brown Jr. was shot and killed by Pasquotank County deputies after they attempted to execute a search warrant at an Elizabeth City home on April 21.
According to an independent autopsy, Brown was shot four times in his right arm, then one time in the back of his head. One family attorney said that was a "kill shot to the head."
Family attorneys said Brown was shot while he was in his car with his hands on the steering wheel -- and deputies kept shooting after he drove away and crashed into a tree.
District Attorney Andrew Womble has claimed Brown's car made contact with deputies.
Initially, seven deputies who were involved in the incident were put on administrative leave. Pasquotank Sheriff Tommy Wooten released their names, including the names of three of those deputies who fired their weapons during the shooting. Those three remain on leave, while the other four were allowed to come back to work.
County commissioners are calling for a change to North Carolina law which dictates that police body-worn footage cannot be released without a judge's approval.
In a resolution, the board called the state's body camera law "highly problematic," and Griffin described it as a "roadblock" to transparency. The North Carolina attorney general has also called for a change to the law.
Governor Cooper has also called for a special prosecutor to handle the case to ensure that the choice to pursue criminal charges can be made without bias.