Fiancee Of Shooting Victim, Jonathan Ferrell, Forgives The Officer Who Killed Him

October 18, 2013  |  

About a month ago,we reported the heartbreaking story of the murder of Jonathan Ferrell, the 24 year old who was gunned down by the police as he ran to them for help.  In our original story, we reported that Ferrelll was engaged to be married, now we’re finally hearing from his fiancée Caché Heidel. In an interview with NBC News, Heidel said that she’s forgiven Officer Randall Kerrick, the policeman who shot and killed her fiancé: “I’ve forgiven him. I’m not hateful. I understand it. He was scared. It just hurts.” 

Heidel explains what happened on the night where everything that could have possibly gone wrong, did. Ferrell had dropped off a co-worker and was driving home at around 2 am on September 14, when his car veered off the road. He crashed and ran to a nearby house for help. He banged on the door and the woman who was home by herself, assumed it was burglar and called the police. Heidel empathizes with the woman.

“She was afraid. She had a baby. It was 2 in the morning. She just reacted on fear and that’s all that happened that night.” 

When the officers arrived, Ferrell ran towards them for help. One officer used a taser unsuccessfully. When that didn’t work, Officer Kerrick fired 12 shots, hitting Farrell 10 times.

Though she has forgiven the police involved in that incident, she says learning Kerrick fired so many shots was disturbing.

“It hurt me when I found out he pretty much emptied his clip. It was out of fear. I do feel like he intended to kill him because he was so scared.” 

She says that she felt the officer had an unconscious bias that he didn’t realize he had until that very moment.

She says, “I felt like if somebody had just taken a step back and really figured out what was going wrong with him they would have known he didn’t cause a threat to anybody.” 

Officer Kerrick was charged with voluntary manslaughter less than 24 hours after the incident.

President of the Charlotte-Mecklenberg NAACP, Rev. Kojo Nantambu, believes Kerrick clearly meant to kill Ferrell.

“When you find out that he shot him four times, paused (then) shot him six times, paused, (then) shot two times- that was deliberate murder.” 

While Ferrell’s family and the NAACP decide whether or not they’re going to file a civil lawsuit, Heidel reminisces about her fiancé of the past six years.

“I always called him ‘Sweets’ because he was the sweetest person I ever met.” 

The two meet during their junior of high school. And a few years later he proposed. Heidel and Ferrell found themselves in a long distance relationship as he played football for Florida A&M University while she attended graduate school in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

They both recently moved Charlotte, where she was an accountant, so they could be together. Ferrell was working two jobs trying to finish school. He eventually wanted to build engines.

Heidel remembers her “Sweets” for his compassion. She recalls the moment she fell for him. The two were driving from a high school football game when Ferrell spotted a homeless woman digging through the trash as he was pumping gas. While she waited in the car, Heidel said Ferrell took the woman into the gas station and bought her some food.

He sounds like such a lovely person, hearing from those close to him, make this tragic story all that more terrible.


You can watch Heidel’s entire interview on the next page. 

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