The Caribbean Im­mi­grant Vic­tims of the NYPD

The Star (St. Lucia) - - INTERNATIONAL - By News Amer­i­cas Staff Writer News Amer­i­cas, NEW YORK, NY,

While protests against the non-indictment of a po­lice of­fi­cer for the death of an un­armed black man in New York City con­tin­ued for the sec­ond straight day yes­ter­day, the re­al­ity is that many Caribbean Americans have also died at the hands of of­fi­cers of the NYPD in the past 22 years.

Here are four cases in re­cent years.

Jose (Kiko) Gar­cia – Do­mini­can Repub­lic. In 1992 Jose (Kiko) Gar­cia, 23, a Do­mini­can im­mi­grant, was killed dur­ing a strug­gle with po­lice of­fi­cers in the lobby of an apart­ment build­ing, Po­lice said he was car­ry­ing a re­volver and he was shot twice by Of­fi­cer Michael O’Keefe. Like with the cases of Gar­ner and Michael Brown, a grand jury cleared also Of­fi­cer O’Keefe, sup­port­ing his claim that Gar­cia reached for a gun be­fore he was shot.

An­thony Baez – Puerto Rico. On Dec. 22, 1994 An­thony Baez, 29, and his brothers were play­ing foot­ball out­side their mother’s apart­ment at Cameron Place in the Bronx when the ball ac­ci­den­tally hit a po­lice car. Of­fi­cer Fran­cis Liv­oti or­dered them to go home but the Baez brothers con­tin­ued their game, play­ing in the op­po­site di­rec­tion. Of­fi­cer Fran­cis Liv­oti ar­rested David Baez first for disor­derly con­duct. He then at­tempted to ar­rest An­thony Baez, who had protested his brother’s ar­rest by cross­ing his arms in front of his chest. A scuf­fle en­sued, while other of­fi­cers ar­rived on scene. Baez was sub­dued, lost con­scious­ness, and was taken to a hos­pi­tal, where he was de­clared dead of as­phyx­i­a­tion. Con­tro­versy cen­tered over the ex­tent to which of­fi­cers con­trib­uted to his death, specif­i­cally whether he was sub­jected to a choke­hold. Liv­oti was sub­se­quently dis­missed by the force for us­ing an il­le­gal choke­hold. He was con­victed on fed­eral civil rights charges and sentenced to seven and a half years in prison but two years after he won ac­quit­tal in a state trial.

Pa­trick Doris­mond – Haiti. Pa­trick Doris­mond, 26, an un­armed Haitian-born se­cu­rity guard, was shot dead by an un­der­cover nar­cotics de­tec­tive in a brawl in front of a bar in Mid­town Man­hat­tan dur­ing the early morn­ing of March 16, 2000.

The un­der­cover po­lice of­fi­cer ap­proached Doris­mond and his friend as they were stand­ing out­side the “Dis­tin­guished Wakamba Cock­tail Lounge” and asked him where he and his part­ners could pur­chase crack co­caine. One of the of­fi­cers, An­thony Vasquez, shot Pa­trick Doris­mond in the chest dur­ing a scuf­fle.

The of­fi­cers claim the scuf­fle be­gan when Doris­mond be­came angry after they propo­si­tioned him, loudly declar­ing he was not a drug dealer. Of­fi­cer Vasquez said he came to his part­ner’s aid. Hear­ing one of the men yelling “Get his gun!,” he drew his weapon and iden­ti­fied him­self as a po­lice of­fi­cer. He claimed Doris­mond grabbed the gun, caus­ing it to dis­charge into his chest. But Doris­mond’s friend, Kevin Kaiser, claims that nei­ther of the of­fi­cers iden­ti­fied them­selves. He says he at­tempted un­suc­cess­fully to pull Doris­mond back from the con­fronta­tion. He de­scribed the first un­der­cover cop who had ap­proached Doris­mond as ag­gres­sive and “in their face.” Kaiser said it was one of the cops who ini­ti­ated the fight, hit­ting Doris­mond first. An am­bu­lance ar­rived on the scene within min­utes of the shoot­ing and Doris­mond was trans­ported to St. Clare’s Hos­pi­tal where at­tempts to re­sus­ci­tate him proved fu­tile. The sin­gle bul­let from Vasquez’s 9mm pis­tol had struck Doris­mond’s aorta and his right lung, and he rapidly bled to death. By late July, a grand jury de­clined to file crim­i­nal charges against the de­tec­tive Vasquez, con­clud­ing that the shoot­ing of Doris­mond was not in­ten­tional. The city of New York then agreed to pay $2.25 mil­lion to his fam­ily.

Ra­mar­ley Gra­ham – Ja­maica. In Fe­bru­ary 2012 Ra­mar­ley Gra­ham, an 18-yearold teenager, was shot by an NYPD of­fi­cer in the Bronx who was chas­ing him over the al­leged pur­chase of a small amount of mar­i­juana. Se­cu­rity video showed Gra­ham en­ter­ing his grand­mother’s home and po­lice run­ning after him. Po­lice at the time said of­fi­cers wit­nessed a drug deal and pur­sued Gra­ham, be­liev­ing he had a gun.

They went in and found him in the sec­ond-floor bath­room, and ended up shoot­ing him in the chest. He died shortly af­ter­ward. A grand jury in­dicted the of­fi­cer, Richard Haste, but a judge threw the indictment out be­cause he said the pros­e­cu­tor failed to tell jurors about the cop’s claim that other cops told him Gra­ham was armed. A sec­ond grand jury de­clined to in­dict. Last Au­gust, the U.S. At­tor­ney for the South­ern Dis­trict of New York an­nounced they would be re­view­ing the case. More than a year later, this Septem­ber, they con­firmed an in­ves­ti­ga­tion was un­der way.

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