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Coulda been any of us...


Late Saturday night, a youth in my area, the Flatbush section of Brooklyn was gunned down in a hail of 11 bullets by the NYPD [1]. Young Kimani, as explained by people on the scene, was walking down the street when enforcement officials exited their vehicle and began to approach him. After this point, slightly different accounts are given by the different people who saw the killing.

According to a witness interviewed on Pix 11 news on 3/10/13,

“‘He was running for his life, telling the cops, ‘Stop,’ said witness Camille Johnson. ‘They really are, seriously, walking around, shooting little kids.’” [2]

According to a witness interviewed on NY1 news on 3/10/13,

Friends says “Kimani had just returned from a baby shower, and was shot only minutes after he was dropped off on East 52nd Street.”[2]

The NY times has an article in which, a woman who lives across the street from the shooting scene said that after the shots were fired, she saw two men, whom she believed to be plainclothes officers, standing over Mr. Gray, who was prone on the sidewalk, clutching his stomach. “He said, ‘Please don’t let me die,’ ” said the woman, 46, who gave her name only as Vanessa. One of the officers, she said, replied: “Stay down, or we’ll shoot you again.” [3]

As of the date of this posting, there has been 3 successive nights of protesting and unrest in the East Flatbush section of Brooklyn. Living very close to the scene, I've heard helicopters over head almost non stop, I've seen enforcement vehicles from large trucks to horses on almost every block and I've seen NYPD footmen patrolling the streets. With the above witnesses, It's a wonder that the unrest isn't an all out insurrection. When people are in danger while walking down a street in their own neighborhood, something has to change. As a youth that grew up in this area, Kimani could have easily been Kofi. I've been stopped and frisked as an adult. When I was 16 I was chased by plainclothes officials and for 2 or 3 blocks I had no idea they were NYPD. Only after they couldn't catch me did they announce who they were. My experience tells me that at the very least, folks need to take what the officers say with a grain of salt, and check many, many sources when researching this event.

About the Officers

The two officials that did the killing were named today one Egyptian born Arab Sgt. Mourad Mourad and Brooklyn[4] born Jovaniel Cordova. Both officers have shot at Black males in the East Flatbush area. Kimani Gray, however is their first kill. Both officers have been placed on “administrative duty”.[1]

Mourad Mourad

Sergeant Mourad, along with Police Officer Dennis Steele, attempted to stop an individual suspected of carrying a firearm at East 49th Street and Linden Boulevard. During the stop, the individual removed a gun from his waistband and fired several rounds at Sergeant Mourad, and several responding officers requested by Sergeant Mourad, who returned fire and gave pursuit as the suspect fled to the rear of a residential building. The individual was ultimately apprehended. Sergeant Mourad immigrated with his family from Egypt to Staten Island in 1994 and served as a police cadet before becoming a police officer.[5]

Jovaniel Cordova

In 2008, Cordova was in an incident when he “noticed a suspicious black male” gave chase and ended the chase, shooting one Akeem Harvey in the chin.

Updates from March 17 2013

Outside articles

Church ave memorial

Since the shooting, people have been making trips to a site on Church ave, in Brooklyn

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