Durham police fatally shoot man trying to evade arrest
Posted February 15
Updated February 18
Durham, N.C. — A man wanted on several outstanding warrants was killed Wednesday afternoon in a shooting involving three Durham police officers, authorities said.
The shooting occurred in the 2500 block of Glenbrook Drive at about 2:20 p.m. as the members of the Selective Enforcement Team were trying to serve an order for arrest, Police Chief C.J. Davis said.
Police haven't released the man's name, but a relative at the scene of the shooting identified him as 24-year-old Kenneth Lee Bailey Jr.
Bailey was charged last summer with robbery with a dangerous weapon, felony conspiracy and possession of a firearm by a felon, and court records show an order for his arrest on the first two charges was issued Wednesday. Davis said the man had violated his pre-trial release conditions.
The man ran from police, and during a foot chase, he pulled a gun from his waistband and pointed it at the officers, who then fired at him, Davis said.
Witnesses said they heard several shots fired and said a school bus was pulling into the neighborhood off East Club Boulevard at the time of the shooting.
Davis said a gun, which had been reported stolen in December, was found next to the man's body.
The Durham Police Department began rolling out body cameras for officers in December, but none of the three officers involved in Wednesday's shooting had a body camera.
A tense situation developed after the shooting, as dozens of police officers flooded into the neighborhood – home to the Club Boulevard or "Bluefield" public housing complex – where angry residents gathered and starting shouting at police. Others were hugging and crying and asking for answers.
"The police need to stop killing our young, black men and anybody else," one man said.
Davis went door to door in the neighborhood after the shooting to talk with residents.
"Any loss of life is a tragic event," she said at a Wednesday evening news conference. "The Durham Police Department continues to be concerned about how incidents like this impact families, our community and our department."
The State Bureau of Investigation has been called in to review the shooting, and all three officers, whose names haven't been released, have been placed on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation, which is standard protocol for officer-involved shootings. A five-day report for Wednesday's shooting should be released Wednesday Feb. 22. with more details on the incident.
Bailey's criminal record dates to 2009 and includes convictions on drug charges, possession of stolen goods, carrying a concealed weapon and speeding to elude arrest. He was last in prison more than two years ago, according to state Department of Public Safety records.
On Saturday, Bailey's mother, Louise Pratt, said that her son has made made out to "look like a violent gangster."
"Kenny was a young man who loved his momma. He loved his aunts and uncles and cousins and friends. He loved his two babies, who lost their father on Wednesday," she said in a statement.
The death marks the second fatal shooting involving Durham police in less than three months. Frank Nathaniel Clark, 34, was killed on Nov. 22 in a struggle with officers at the McDougald Terrace public housing complex.
A third fatal shooting occurred last weekend in Durham involving a State Highway Patrol trooper. The trooper shot Willard Eugene Scott Jr., 31, during a brief foot chase after Scott refused to comply with a traffic stop, authorities said.
Durham police also were involved in five other shootings between July 2013 and September 2015. Three men were killed in those incidents:
July 27, 2013: Police investigating a stabbing found Jose Ocampo holding a knife and shot him four times.
Sept. 18, 2013: Derek Walker brandished a gun in downtown Durham, and a police standoff and negotiations ended with police shooting and killing him.
Sept. 5, 2015: Lavonte Biggs was fatally shot in a police standoff in which he was later found to have been carrying a pellet gun.
Police wounded suspects in a McDonald's break-in in June 2015 and a convenience store robbery in July 2015.