RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – A 30-year-old man was shot eight times during a confrontation with a Raleigh police officer on April 20, according to an attorney representing the victim’s family.
Attorney Cate Edwards released a statement in response to the City of Raleigh’s preliminary report on the fatal shooting of Soheil Mojarrad at a shopping center off Rogers Lane.
The report states Mojarrad pulled a knife from his pocket and aggressively moved towards Officer W.B. Edwards before being fatally shot.
In her statement, attorney Cate Edwards said the majority of the eight shots that hit Mojarrad did not enter through the front of his body.
“There is no indication from the report issued by the Raleigh Police Department, or from the initial evidence we have collected, that this situation required or authorized the use of deadly force,” Cate Edwards said.
She called the preliminary report “inaccurate” and said the officer did not follow proper procedure for using deadly force.
Officer Edwards also did not activate his body-worn camera during the incident. The report states the confrontation between the officer and Mojarrad lasted less than a minute.
“The officer was unjustified in shooting Soheil, and this young man unnecessarily lost his life,” Cate Edwards said.
Mojarrad was killed as Officer Edwards searched for a person accused of stealing a cell phone from a patron at a nearby Sheetz gas station, officials said.
The preliminary report says Mojarrad screamed obscenities at Officer Edwards as he ignored commands from the officer.
The SBI is investigating the fatal shooting and will deliver its findings to the Wake County District Attorney’s Office.
Mojarrad had multiple arrests in Wake County dating back 10 years, court records show.
On Jan. 31, he was arrested for assault in the same shopping center where he would be killed on April 20.
The 30-year-old’s family says he suffered from mental illness.
“Soheil wanted the best for himself and everyone, and would never intentionally want to hurt anyone. Sadly, like many others, he suffered from mental illness,” a statement from the family said.
The family believes Mojarrad was wrongfully killed and “will continue to fight for justice on his behalf.”
Protestors marched in Raleigh Thursday afternoon to decry the officer’s use of deadly force.
Based off a statement from Cate Edwards, a previous version of this story stated Mojarrad had only been shot once in the front of his body. The story has since been updated with a revised statement from the attorney saying the majority of the eight bullets did not hit him in the front of his body.