COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - With state and federal officials now investigating the case of 50-year-old Walter Scott in North Charleston, state and federal leaders are issuing responses to the incident that has captured nationwide attention.
Gov. Nikki Haley released a statement after video of the shooting was released.
"We have many good law enforcement officers in the field. What happened in this case is not acceptable in South Carolina, nor is it reflective of our values or of the way most of our law enforcement officials act, and I assure all South Carolinians that the criminal judicial process will proceed fully," Haley said. "This is a sad time for everyone in South Carolina, and I urge everyone to work together to help our community heal."
South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson also released a statement, saying his office was able to assist if it were needed.
"This is a very difficult and emotional time for our state. I have already spoken with Chief Mark Keel and Solicitor Scarlett Wilson on this matter and I am very confident that the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division will conduct a very thorough and fair investigation and that Solicitor Wilson's office will uphold the rule of law," Wilson said.
The shooting also prompted a response from both of South Carolina's sitting senators.
Sen. Lindsey Graham called the video "horrific," "very difficult to watch," and "deeply troubling on many fronts."
"I have full confidence this incident will continue to be investigated by the relevant authorities, the legal process will proceed, and ultimately, justice will be done," Graham said. "I also know the actions of the officer in this situation do not accurately reflect on the many valuable contributions made by thousands of law enforcement officers in South Carolina and across our nation."
Sen. Tim Scott, meanwhile, asked for peace as protests were being planned in the city.
"I understand the hurt, the frustration and the anger many are feeling today. But violence solves nothing. We must come together as a community, as a state, and as a nation in working to bring our communities together and rebuild trust," Scott said.