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News Link • Police State

NYPD chief Ray Kelly defends officers over Empire State Building shooting

• Karen McVeigh, The Guardian

Raymond Kelly, the New York police commissioner, has defended two of his officers whose decision to fatally shoot an armed man outside the Empire State Building on Friday led to nine bystanders being injured.

Kelly on Monday described the shooting as appropriate in the circumstances. The officers had been told that Jeffrey Johnson had killed a co-worker around the corner and was pointing his gun at the pair during rush hour on West 33rd St in Manhattan.

The NYPD’s handling of the shooting was questioned by one of those injured. A grand jury, convened on Monday, will decide whether the police response was reasonable.

Robert Asika, 23, told the Guardian on Monday that he stood by his comments on Friday, when he accused police of “shooting randomly”. Asika, who was on his way to hospital on Monday because of bleeding from the wound to his elbow, said he saw at least two others being hit by police bullets.


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