- The Washington Times - Saturday, March 4, 2017

A Facebook user who livestreamed a murder victim’s dying moments at a North Carolina motel this winter won’t face criminal charges, authorities said Thursday.

Police investigating the murder of Calvin Louis Blackshire, Jr. held a press conference Thursday six weeks after the father-of-one was discovered in grave condition behind a Motel 6 in Fayetteville, N.C.

Blackshire, 27, was fatally shot on Jan. 19 and died the next day. While the homicide case remains cold, however, authorities this week said they recently identified a person who used Facebook Live to broadcast Blackshire’s death.

Sgt. Pedro Orellano said investigators interviewed the person after finding them with the help of Facebook, but ultimately determined they weren’t involved in the killing and couldn’t be charged.

The video has since been deleted by Facebook, but lingers in the minds of Blackshire’s family.

“I just want to know who in the world with any kind of decency would do something like that?” his mother, Pamela Blackshire, said Thursday after recalling the roughly 10-minute long livestream. “It’s a shame they couldn’t be arrested for watching someone dying and not assisting.”

“You could see people standing over my son taking pictures,” she said.

“It is despicable,” Sgt. Orellano said. “I agree.”

But no law exists against captured a person’s dying moments on camera, according to police.

Blackshire’s death marks the first unsolved homicide to plague the city in 20 months, the Fayetteville Observer reported.

“We believe it was a robbery and we need to find out who Calvin was meeting at the hotel that night,” Sgt. Orellano said at Thursday’s presser, according to the newspaper.

Facebook Live was first introduced to the social network’s big name users in August 2015 prior to being made available to the service’s billion-plus account holders the following April.

“Live is like having a TV camera in your pocket,” Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg explained at the time. “Anyone with a phone now has the power to broadcast to anyone in the world.”

The platform quickly become popular among users of the world’s largest social network, albeit not without incident. Just last month the slayings of four people were broadcast on Facebook Live within a single day when two separate livestreams were interrupted by violence hours apart.


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