Charles Smith's family speaks out after shooting

Charles Smith's family speaks out after shooting

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - The family of Charles Smith, the man killed in an officer-involved shooting on Thursday, attended a rally on Thursday night still very much in grief.

Smith was 29 years old with a five-month-old daughter and another child on the way. In West Savannah he was known by everyone as Dr. Dee.

"That's injustice," Catherine Smith, Charles' sister said. "It's inhumane and it's a crime."

Smith's family described him as a loving father.

"He's gone, and he won't be able to be here to see the birth of his second child, and he won't be able to raise his two kids that he's got left behind," said Janie Smith, Charles' sister.

The family also remembered him as a devoted brother.

"He had just dropped me off to work," said Catherine Smith. "He hadn't been outside 15 minutes."

Word traveled fast across West Savannah that Smith had been shot.

"This is our neighborhood. We was born and raised here," said Catherine Smith.

That neighborhood came out in force.

"He had no right to be killed by the police," said Janie Smith. "It was just uncalled for, totally uncalled for."

Smith's family said he was getting his life together after being released from prison last year for an aggravated assault charge.

"He was on probation, but it was no reason for him to be killed the way he was killed at all," said Janie Smith.

Smith's mother questions the Georgia Bureau of Investigations' preliminary findings that a gun was found under his body.

"When he fell on the ground, the police officers surrounded him and told everyone to get back or they would go to jail," said Penny Nelson, Charles Smith's mother. "If anything, they planted the gun on him. My child did not have no gun on him."

Whether or not the investigation proves that to be the case, one question will remain for both the police and for Smith's family.

"How you going to handcuff a man, put him in the backseat of a police car and don't search him," Nelson said.

Smith's family said they will continue to march every day until they get the answers they're seeking.

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