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Eyewitness: Victim Did Not Have To Die

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Eyewitness James Goggins was a passenger in Anderson's car Monday night.
RALEIGH — The only civilian eyewitness to this week's deadly shooting of a motoristby Raleigh Police says the victim did not have to die.

Police say Ed Anderson tried to run down two officers so they had toshoot in order to save themselves.

John Goggins refused to speak on camera with WRAL's Stuart Watson, becausehe says he fears police retaliation. Police interviewed Goggins andreleased him, but he says he told them what they wanted to hear. Gogginstold us a different story.

Two Raleigh Police officers shot 39-year-old Ed Anderson to death,because, they say, he tried to run them down with his car.

But, the only eyewitness who was NOT a policeman questions whetherAnderson had to die. 38-year-old John Goggins was riding in the passengerseat when police pulled the car over.

Police have arrested Goggins before for robbery and selling crack, butthey did not charge him after Monday night's shooting.

Goggins told us off camera that an officer opened the car door andsprayed Anderson with pepper spray before the suspect put the car ingear.

So, according to Goggins, Anderson could not have seen the officersstationed in front of and behind the car.

Police say that the officers, who were stationed in front of and behindthe car, opened fire after Anderson pinned them against their cars. But,Goggins says the officer at the driver-side door yelled, "I'm going toshoot" before Anderson pulled his car away.

At issue is whether police could have subdued Anderson with the pepperspray without shooting him. Pepper spray can temporarily disable suspectsresisting arrest, but it doesn't always work.

The SBI found in 10 out of 11 police shootings in North Carolina thatbegan with the use of pepper spray, police reported the spray wasineffective. Pepper spray is difficult to use, according to SBI ChiefInvestigator Bill Dowdy.

Raleigh Police have asked the State Bureau of Investigation to look intothe shooting and present their findings to the District Attorney.Raleigh Police who were familiar with the shooting were not available forcomment, due to the holiday.

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