The family of the man shot by a Chesterfield police officer reacted to surveillance video taken just before the incident, early Sunday morning. Police say Frankie Pitt, 45, stole registers from two convenience stores, before encountering an officer on the ramp to Chippenham Parkway.
About ten minutes after a suspect swiped the entire register drawer from the Circle K on Hull Street Road, an officer stopped for a disabled car. Investigators say the driver was Pitt.
Police say Pitt struggled with the officer over his gun. The officer reached it first and fired a deadly shot, according to detectives.
Police say Pitt also hit the Uppy's convenience store on Willis Road earlier in the weekend.
However, Pitt's family says they're not sure it's definitely him in the video. His fiance, Azzie Robinson, says she buys all of his clothes and doesn't recognize what he's wearing.
However, even if Pitt did take the register, NBC12's legal analyst, Steve Benjamin, says that doesn't affect whether the officer rightfully shot him.
"That question is going to be whether the officer, at the time of the shooting, in fact had a reasonable apprehension of death or serious bodily harm," said Benjamin.
In other words, the officer would need a reason to fear for his life. That's still under investigation.
What the video does do is give more weight to the officer's side of the story, if it is Pitt in the video.
"(The video) does, however, have the effect of corroborating what the officer said, and providing a possible motive for the decedent (Pitt), to have acted as he did in trying to avoid apprehension," analyzed Benjamin.
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