A former prosecutor in the Davidson County district attorney's office was terminated after an internal review of the case of De'Angelo Knox's death showed she wrote in an email, praising the security guard who shot him as having an "excellent shot."
News4 Investigates obtained a copy of the email written by former prosecutor Pam Anderson.
In an interview with News4 Investigates, Anderson said the email was taken out of context.
Knox's death in 2018 sparked an outcry by the NAACP and Knox's family, as Anderson chose not to prosecute the case at the time.
Knox was shot and killed after an unknown person shot at him while driving, forcing him to crash, fire back, and then run down the street in front of The Pharmacy restaurant.
At the restaurant, Nathan Glass, a security officer at the restaurant, opened the front door and shot at Knox while he was running, killing him.
Anderson reviewed the case and declined to bring it to the grand jury.
Glass then went on to become a metro police officer.
After the NAACP and Knox's family held a news conference in October calling for a federal hate crime investigation, the district attorney's office began reviewing the case.
The district attorney's office confirmed to News 4 Investigates that they found the email on October 29.
Anderson's termination records show she was fired on November 2nd.
In the email, Anderson discussed the case with a metro police detective.
Anderson wrote in the email that Knox was "justifiably killed" by Glass.
After the detective writes that his main homicide suspect gave Knox an AK pistol, Knox then pointed at Glass.
Anderson responds by writing, "Ha! The security guard was an excellent shot."
"That's totally unacceptable. But sometimes people get in positions and take their authority and think they can do anything with their authority," said Angela Dotson-Heard, Knox's mother. "(I'm) disgusted. I can't believe a person in her position would even think like that."
Dotson-Heard and the NAACP argue that the video shows that Knox did not point his weapon at Glass.
Glass is now charged with second degree murder and has been decommissioned from the police department.
A decommissioned Metro Police officer involved in the 2018 shooting death was indicted for second-degree murder on Thursday afternoon.
Anderson tells News4 Investigates that you have to know the context of the email to understand it.
"Frankly, when you read that email, it comes off pretty callous," asked News4 Investigates.
"It does. If you don't read the entire email," Anderson said.
Anderson said the "Ha!" she wrote was not her laughing, but rather her realizing that the metro detective believes a homicide suspect gave Knox the weapon he was carrying.
Anderson also said her statement about Glass' shot was just her noting that it was impressive that someone who hadn't entered the police academy had that kind of precision.
"Context is always very important. But when you read that email – it sure doesn't seem like something that a prosecutor should type and put in writing," asked News4 investigates.
"The thing about the email is that you have to know is that email was absolutely an excuse for firing me," Anderson said.
Anderson said she could have more to say about her termination in the coming days. Still, he added that the email was not brought up during her termination. She was not allowed to explain it.
In a statement to News4 Investigates, a spokesman for the district attorney's office wrote, "General Funk would like to respond, but cannot at this time because this is a pending case."