As the N.C. Central Community tirelessly searches for answers, two 911 calls, released Friday by the Durham Police Department, gave more insight into the fatal off-campus shooting of NCCU student DeAndre Ballard on Sept 17.
The calls were made by two unidentified security officers at Campus Crossings, where the shooting took place and where Ballard lived. One of those officers claimed to be the shooter.
According to the dispatch calls, Ballard (who remained unidentified at the time of the call) was trying to get into a car in the parking lot for an unknown reason. The officer claimed to have approached Ballard in his vehicle and asked what was he trying to do.
According to the officer, that’s when Ballard allegedly entered the officer’s vehicle and assaulted him. The officer claimed that Ballard attempted to reach for his gun during the fight, which led to him drawing his weapon and firing a single shot in self defense.
The 911 calls followed soon after, with both officers frantically requesting emergency aid for Ballard. According to the officers, Ballard was placed upright at the security booth in the front of the neighborhood, still breathing. One officer claimed that Ballard was going into shock and floating in and out of consciousness.
During a call, the same officer can be heard repeatedly saying “take a deep breath, my man” and “get up and be still”. However, that same officer did not give a direct response to the dispatcher when first aid treatment was mentioned. The officer claiming to have shot Ballard stated there was first aid being given, but to what degree is unknown.
Despite the 911 calls giving more information on the fatal shooting from the officers’ perspectives, the new details bring into question the motivation behind DeAndre Ballard’s alleged actions.
Ballard’s friends and family have indicated that this sort of behavior would be completely out of character for him.
The newly released calls come during a series of protests this week. On Monday, NCCU students and faculty participated in a walkout protest to bring awareness to DeAndre’s death. On Friday, protesters gathered in front of the NC Detective Agency, demanding charges be made. Durham Mayor Steve Schewel called it a tragedy and reminded the public that the investigation will take time.
It is clear that many still desire more concrete answers as to what led up to, caused and followed Ballard’s death. Until then, the public waits for an official statement from Durham police as to what will happen next in the investigation.
Dispatch Call 1:
Dispatch Call 2: