Unarmed black man was shot over a small amount of marijuana
Reported By Liku Zelleke
Ramarley Graham was 18-years-old when he was shot and killed by an NYPD police officer in his home in the Bronx in February of 2012.
He had run into his home with police officers in pursuit who said they had witnessed Graham participate in a drug deal. The officers, in plainclothes, had suspected that he also had a gun in his waistband. It was later found out that he was in fact unarmed.
Once inside, they found Graham in his toilet where, it was supposed, he was trying to flush a small amount of marijuana down the toilet.
That was when Officer Richard Haste shot and killed him.
Haste was charged with the shooting and briefly saw the inside of a court room on a manslaughter indictment. But the judge threw the case out after it was revealed that prosecutors had interfered with the instructions given to the grand jury, which the judge claimed were misleading.
Now, Constance Malcolm, the mother of Ramarley Graham is begging for the U.S. Justice Department to open a federal investigation into her son’s death.
In a special op-ed for the New York Daily News, Malcolm said, “I was unable to celebrate my son’s last three birthdays with him, but I need to know that our government and legal system serves justice and cares equally about the lives of all people.”
Malcolm also said that her family’s fight for justice should be seen in a bigger context where all victims of police shootings should be taken into the consideration, “The lives of Amadou Diallo, Sean Bell and many New Yorkers like Ramarley – primarily Black and Latino – have not been honored by our justice system.”
She says, “When defenders of abusive stop-and-frisk police practices claimed the NYPD already had sufficient oversight and mechanisms of accountability by citing district attorneys and other entities, it always struck me as disingenuous given the consistent failures to hold officers accountable for recklessly taking the lives of so many unarmed New Yorkers.”
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