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‘That was not the brother I knew’

Alfreda Smith-Musgrove said her brother, who was shot and killed by police on Monday, was not the man she grew to knew. 

“Yesterday (Monday), when I walked in the front house, that was not my brother I saw,” Smith-Musgrove, 38, said.

She said that her brother was not “crazy”.

She said no one in the family knew “what was going on with him, to be honest”.

“We don’t know where that come from,” Smith-Musgrove said.

“We don’t know where that part of his life came from. Maybe when he was in prison before he adapted that attitude from there? Fighting, struggling and whatever — I don’t know if that [took] a toll on his life or whatever.

“But that, yesterday, wasn’t the Carlton we grew to know. That’s not our brother.”

Smith-Musgrove’s brother, Carlton Smith, 33, was killed during a shootout with police at his mother’s Cascarilla Street home. 

Police said Smith visited the home and became belligerent towards his mother, who was doing her morning prayers. His mother then called the police.

When officers arrived on the scene, she led them to the room her son was in. As they entered, Smith opened fire on his mother and police.

One officer was shot in the back as he sought to protect the mother. Another officer injured his leg during the attack.

Smith was later killed during a shootout when responding officers breached the room door.

Smith-Musgrove said Monday wasn’t the first time their mother called the police on him.

“When he would come and he would cuss and carry on, my mother would call the police,” she said.

“So, that what we see yesterday was a total shock. We ain’t even know a scene like that would have happened because usually when she calls the police and the police come here, they would just take him and ask him, ‘Where you want to go?’

“That’s all that we thought would happen yesterday.”

In the past, police officers took Smith to his father’s house on Cowpen Road, according to his sister.

Smith-Musgrove said her brother was prone to fits of rage when he was released from prison.

She said he spent multiple stints in prison.

“You couldn’t come up on him and brush up on him and say nothing,” she said.

“He always felt like he needed to defend himself. So, with him feeling that he always needs to defend himself, that’s probably where all that build-up and everything came from.”

Smith-Musgrove said she loves her brother regardless.

“This hurt and this pain that we feeling, we’re going to feel this,” she said.

“He was a part of us. That’s blood.” 

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Jasper Ward

Jasper Ward started at The Nassau Guardian in September 2018. Ward covers a wide range of national and social issues. Education: Goldsmiths, University of London, MA in Race, Media and Social Justice

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