Father slams NYPD narrative after police fatally shoot man

Father slams NYPD narrative after police fatally shoot man

Father slams NYPD narrative after police fatally shoot man

Clarke said she looks forward to working with elected officials in ensuring that "the appropriate focus is given to addressing the mentally ill and their interactions with NYPD, and proper, clear and transparent protocols are in place to make sure that lethal force is used as a last resort when interacting with the mentally ill of our communities, so we can avoid losing another life to unnecessary violence".

Protesters were undeterred Thursday night by the release of video confirming that the slain suspect was behaving in a threatening manner. "We've got to recognize if they believe they are in immediate matter of life-and-death to the people in the surrounding area, that's an exceedingly hard, tense split-second decision that has to be made".

The NYPD did not identify any of the officers involved in the shooting of Vassell, 34, a welder born in Jamaica.

Four officers, three in plainclothes and one in uniform, then fired a total of 10 shots, striking the man, police said.

The videos appeared to support the NYPD's claims that the man on Wednesday evening was repeatedly thrusting a metal object that looked like a gun into the faces of several people - including a woman holding the hand of her child.

The victim's father, Eric Vassell, told the New York Times that that his son had bipolar disorder and had been admitted to hospitals several times in recent years. Locals told reporters Vassell was known for picking up trash off the street and playing with it like toys.

On April 5 in Crown Heights, residents of the neighborhood where the shooting occurred and where the victim lived held a vigil and protest in the honor of Vassell.

Witnesses told police the man had "something in his jacket", sources said.

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But along with the African-American leaders, there were representatives from the Orthodox Jewish community, a scene unimaginable back in 1991, when the neighborhood was rocked by riots that pitted the two groups against each other.

The object the man was holding was not a gun, but rather "a pipe with some sort of knob on the end of it", Monahan said.

Civil rights activists see it as yet another fatal shooting of an unarmed black man by police - but investigators say they had reason to believe Vassell was armed. It turned out to be a cellphone.

Vassell was fatally shot on the corner of Utica Avenue and Montgomery Street after police say he took a two-handed shooting stance and pointed the object at them. None of them were wearing body cameras.

Witnesses said the officers jumped out of an unmarked vehicle and started shooting without warning. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio called the shooting in Brooklyn a tragedy on more than one level.

"Saheed Vassell was killed in broad daylight by four police officers who clearly didn't stop long enough to ask a single question about his condition", said Judith Browne-Dianis, Executive Director of the Advancement Project national office.

"She just doesn't understand, and it's something that she will never understand", Eric Vassell told me.

"We were always anxious for him".

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