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Time after Time: Call for Investigation into Police Killings

IMC Staff Dec 22, 2006

MurdersNew York City Councilmember Letitia James is calling for a special agency to be formed to investigate every police killing in the city. According to the October 22 Coalition to Stop Police Brutality, the police have killed 131 people since the shooting of Amadou Diallo in 1999.

The vast majority of the victims have been African-American men.

The list includes:

March 1, 2000
MALCOLM FERGUSON, 23, who had been captured by Fox 5 news cameras being arrested during a protest following Diallo’s death, was shot in the head by police. He died just blocks from where Diallo was
killed in the Bronx. Police said the shooting was accidental and no charges were filed.

March 16, 2000
PATRICK DORISMOND, 26, was fatally shot in the chest by a police officer in midtown. The Haitian immigrant was shot after an undercover police officer stopped him and asked him where he could purchase marijuana in the area. A scuffle broke out and the unarmed Dorismond was shot. To justify the shooting, Mayor Giuliani released Dorismond’s sealed juvenile arrest record. The city then sent hundreds of police officers dressed in riot gear to patrol Dorismond’s funeral. Police assaulted and pepper-sprayed mourners. A grand jury chose not to indict.

May 16, 2003
ALBERTA SPRUILL, 57, died in her Harlem apartment after police conducted a pre-dawn raid. Police detonated a concussion grenade and handcuffed Spruill before realizing they had the wrong apartment. Spruill went into cardiac arrest and died. The raid occurred as she was preparing to go to the city job she had held for 29 years. The NYPD had secured a no-knock warrant on her apartment based on information provided by a criminal informant.

May 22, 2003
OUSMANE ZONGO, 43, was killed during a police raid on a Chelsea warehouse suspected of being a center of CD and DVD pirating. Zongo, an African arts trader from Burkina Faso, worked on his craft in the building. Undercover officer Bryon Conroy chased Zongo into a dead end and shot him four times, twice in the back. Zongo was unarmed, and was not connected to the pirating. Conroy was tried for manslaughter, but a mistrial was declared.

January 24, 2004
TIMOTHY STANSBURY, JR., 19, was shot by a police officer as he was climbing a staircase to an apartment roof in Bedford-Stuyvesant. The unarmed teenager was shot in the chest by a police officer who never identified himself. Stansbury was heading to a party carrying a stack of CDs. Police Commissioner Ray Kelly admitted there was no justification for the shooting but a state grand jury declined to indict the police officer.