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Families of New Yorkers Killed by Police to Urge Legislature to Reject Counterproductive Criminal Justice Proposals

Mon, 06/15/2015
Yul-san Liem
Group will express opposition to independent monitor: grand jury reform is inadequate without special prosecutor for police killings  
Families will unite to reiterate their demand for Cuomo to issue executive order for special prosecutor to uphold justice in state

WHAT:          Press conference by families of victims in police killings to urge rejection of inadequate justice reforms, and demand Governor Cuomo issue executive order for special prosecutor

WHEN:          Monday, June 15 at 1 PM

WHERE:        New York State Capitol Building, 2nd fl. in front of Governor’s office; Albany, NY

WHO:            Gwen Carr, mother of Eric Garner
                      Valerie Bell, mother of Sean Bell
                      Hawa Bah, mother of Mohamed Bah
                      Iris Baez, mother of Anthony Baez
                      Margarita Rosario, mother of Anthony Rosario & Aunt of Hilton Vega
                      Justice Committee

WHY:            Across the nation, the unjust police killings of people of color – primarily Black and Latino – continue.Since February, the surviving family members of 18 New Yorkers killed by the police over the past decades have been demanding Governor Cuomo exercise his executive power to authorize the appointment of a special prosecutor to examine and prosecute police killings.

In April, several of the families met with Governor Cuomo in his Albany office, wherehe conveyed that he would issue an executive order for a special prosecutor if his justice reform proposal that includes an independent monitor was not passed by the state legislature by the June 17 end of the legislative session.

It has been widely recognized that local district attorneys – who collaborate with and depend upon police departments for success on a daily basis – have an inherent and systemic conflict-of-interest that is an overwhelming impediment to justice in cases where police unjustly kill civilians. President Obama’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing – comprised of police commissioners, law enforcement experts and community stakeholders – recommended the use of prosecutors who are independent and external of local district attorneys when police kill civilians.