New York police shoot dead black man holding pipe

Casey Dawson
April 6, 2018

He added what the Times referred to as a "common refrain": Police should have known Vassell wasn't actually pointing a gun at them.

"It's disturbing that these loopholes exist and that closing them is necessary to prevent police officers from sexually abusing civilians", said Pierre.

Officers say they opened fire Wednesday after Vassell, 34, pointed an object at them that was later found to be a metal pipe.

The NYPD said four officers-three in plainclothes and one uniformed-fired 10 rounds at Vassell, a Jamaican immigrant.

When asked about body cameras, Monahan said none of the officers were wearing cameras. The officers applied first aid and called for an ambulance to take him to Kings County Hospital, where he was later pronounced dead.

The New York Times also reports that interviewed neighbors said that Vassell was well known by his community and by the police, and that the NYPD should have known better than to shoot him, as he was a familiar face. Above is a representational image of police officers along with their firearms.

"He collects things off the street and piles it up on the roof", said Martinez, who also showed an envelope addressed to Vassell's father, Eric, that was left with the scraps.

The killing brought an angry crowd out to the Utica and Montgomery intersection, with dozens shouting at the mix of cops and reporters who gathered there. "A young man in his own community, shot down - yet again!"

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Witnesses said the officers appeared to fire nearly immediately after they got to the corner around 4:45 p.m.

"It's critical that the New York State Legislature repeal 50-a, particularly since the de Blasio administration has chosen to misuse the state law to hide increasingly more information on police misconduct while failing to support repeal of the law".

"He's mentally ill but don't mess with anybody", resident O'Neil Headley said. Everybody just knows he's just mentally challenged.

"We're committed to conducting an independent, comprehensive and fair investigation", Amy Spitalnick, a spokeswoman for New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, said in a statement. He has no issue with violence.

The pipe-wielding Brooklyn man killed by NYPD cops was a hoarder who collected mostly metal junk that he stashed on his apartment building roof, the buildings super said Thursday.

The shooting follows a number of killings of unarmed black men by police that triggered street protests and fuelled a national debate about bias in the US criminal justice system.

Numerous neighborhood's residents arrived at the police tape to air their frustrations over the shooting. Four officers discharged their weapons at Vassell, firing 10 shots in total.

In police radio traffic recorded during the incident and posted online, dispatchers directing officers to the scene said 911 callers were reporting only that a person was pointing a gun at people.

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