Unarmed man killed by narcotics officer in The Bronx

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Saturday, February 4, 2012

An unarmed man was killed by a New York City Police Department Narcotics Enforcement officer at his home in the Williamsbridge neighborhood of The Bronx, New York on Thursday, according to police. 18-year-old Ramarley Graham was pronounced dead at nearby Montefiore Medical Center. He was shot by a 9-millimeter semiautomatic pistol. The incident is currently being investigated by Internal Affairs, and a grand jury investigation is expected into whether criminal charges should be filed against the officers involved.

The incident began with Mr. Graham walking on the street near his East 229th Street home, police say. He was approached by plain cloths officers in NYPD marked raid jackets. The officers were investigating suspected drug sales at a bodega. As they were approaching, Graham fled on foot towards his home and was followed by the officers. After officers followed him into the building, he entered the bathroom. An officer ordered Graham to "Show me your hands! Show me your hands!" After he failed to comply, the officer shot Graham once in the chest.

There were no weapons found on Graham's person or at the scene. There was a small bag of cannabis in the toilet.

Police said the officer who shot Graham and his supervising sergeant have been placed on modified duty in light of the incident. The names of the officers were not released, but the officer who shot Graham is said to be 30 years old and joined the NYPD in 2008.

Police commissioner Raymond Kelly said "We're obviously trying to get the facts. A young man's life was taken. ... It's the worst thing that can happen to a parent — to lose a child." Mayor Michael Bloomberg said "We obviously have some real concerns [about the incident]."

This was the third time within a week a young man had died in a police-involved shooting in New York City. 22-year-old Christopher Kissane was killed in an alleged carjacking in Cypress Hills, Brooklyn and 17-year-old Antwain White was killed in an alleged mugging in Bushwick, Brooklyn.


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