The family of Ramarley Graham, a black teen who was gunned down in his Bronx, N.Y., home by a police officer, is demanding justice in the teen's case, telling the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York Preet Bharara that the "foot-dragging is unacceptable," the New York Daily News reports.
Tuesday will mark four years since Graham, 18, was shot to death by New York City Police Officer Richard Haste after the officer chased Graham into his home.
Haste was initially indicted for Graham's death in June 2012, but a judge tossed out the indictment on a legal technicality, the Daily News notes. A second grand jury then declined to indict the officer again. Authorities have insisted that Haste mistakenly thought that Graham was armed.
A Justice Department investigation was launched in August 2013, but the family doesn't think that the review is moving as they continue to wait for justice.
“This case is just lingering, and we don’t know what’s going on,” Graham’s mother, Constance Malcolm, told the news site. “Nobody’s telling us. They’re dragging their feet.
“Ramarley’s killing was a clear violation of his civil rights,” the grieving mother added. “It’s time for Preet Bharara to prioritize this case and move forward.”
The family and supporters are organizing protests for Tuesday in front of the prosecutor’s Manhattan office, starting with a vigil at 5:30 p.m., the site notes. They are also planning to occupy the space in front of Bharara’s office Tuesday night into Wednesday morning.
“We just want the message clear that you’re on notice,” Malcolm said. “The foot-dragging is unacceptable. We will not allow that to be swept under the rug.”
Malcolm noted that her other son, who was 6 at the time, had to receive counseling.
“They shot my son in front of my other son and in front of their grandmother,” she said. “My baby watched that whole thing. He’s damaged for the rest of his life."
Nonetheless, the mother hopes to raise the now 10-year-old not to be fearful of police.
“I don’t want him to get angry,” she said. “No matter what, I tell him, ‘Cops aren't all bad.’ … I can’t condemn the whole force.”
Read more at the New York Daily News.