A New York City police officer, Richard Haste, involved in the fatal shooting of unarmed 18-year-old Ramarley Graham last year in the Bronx will not be reindicted by a grand jury, NBC 4 reports.
The decision rankled Graham’s family, which led to a demonstration on Thursday of about 100 people, including mayoral candidate William Thompson and comptroller candidate Scott Stringer. Protesters called for justice and compared the case to the shooting death of unarmed Florida teen Trayvon Martin.
Officer Richard Haste was indicted last summer on manslaughter charges in the death of 18-year-old Ramarley Graham. Haste pursued Graham into his apartment and shot him in the bathroom. He said he believed the teen was armed.
The initial charges were dropped in May. The judge said prosecutors had improperly left the grand jury with the impression it should not consider testimony by other officers, who had said they radioed Haste to warn him they thought Graham was armed.
Bronx District Attorney Robert Johnson said in a statement Thursday he was “surprised and shocked” by the grand jury’s finding. He also said he believed the judge’s decision to dismiss the initial indictment had been “overly cautious.”
The second grand jury, when given the proper instructions, acted “courageously,” said Patrick Lynch, the president of the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association.
“He was facing the same imminent danger that all police officers face as we fight to rid our neighborhoods of dangerous, illegal guns,” Lynch said.
Read more at NBC 4.