Published: Sun, April 08, 2018
World | By Camille Rivera

NY police kill man wielding pipe

NY police kill man wielding pipe

Protesters marched through Crown Heights in Brooklyn, New York, on Thursday, April 5, to remember Saheed Vassell, a local man shot dead by police the previous day. It turned out the object in Vassell's hands was a pipe with another object, possibly a knob, attached.

When officers arrived at the corner of Utica Avenue and Montgomery Street, they encountered Vassell, who matched the description provided by the 911 callers.

It's worth noting that a week and a half before the police killed Vassell in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, NYPD officers on Staten Island approached Lori Gjenashj's vehicle, when she got out holding a real starter pistol - not a pipe.

Saheed Vassell's father told reporters that his son had previously worked as a welder. They always have a choice.

The release of the edited material on the NYPD's Twitter account - the full videos and transcripts weren't immediately provided - was meant to back up the department's claims that the four plainclothes and two uniformed officers who responded had a legitimate reason to believe they needed to move swiftly to stop a deadly threat.

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Four of the officers then opened fire, striking Mr Vassell.

Mr Monahan said CCTV from local stores showed Mr Vassell brandishing an object that looked like a firearm.

At a vigil Thursday night, Vassell's mother, Lorna, said her son "came from a good home" and that he was not homeless.

"Police had a choice".

"What we have seen from the images that are publicly available, people in the community thought he had a weapon and was aiming it at residents", the mayor said. They should not train them to kill.

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The video depicted Vassell, who is black, pointing the object at police in a combat stance seconds before officers fired. After the shooting, the officers can be heard frantically calling for dispatchers to send an ambulance. "They should train them to protect life, to save life", Eric Vassell told WABC-TV. Police officials announced a new social media campaign, along with ads on buses and subways reaching out to victims.

"I'm grateful to New York State Attorney General, Eric Schneiderman, for opening a formal investigation into the death of Saheed and trust that the investigation will be both thorough and transparent", the congresswoman continued.

Under an executive order issued by the governor in 2015, the attorney general has the power to act as a special prosecutor in cases involving police killings of unarmed people.

A spokesperson for Eric Schneiderman said in a statement his office is "committed to conducting an independent, comprehensive, and fair investigation" into Wednesday's shooting.

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