New York State Senator Reverend Ruben Diaz called State Supreme Court Justice Arthur J. Cooperman’s verdict of not guilty on all counts as "another travesty of justice". All charges for the three New York City Police officers who were on trial in the shooting death of Sean Bell were dismissed today in State Supreme Court after a 2-month non-jury trial.
"My prayers go out for Sean Bell’s fiancé and his family as they continue to suffer the results of this shocking verdict," stated Senator Rev. Diaz, a Pentecostal minister. "While we are forced to face another experience of grave injustice, I join with our religious leaders who call for calm in our City."
"The court's rationale for exonerating these defendants was to give them the benefit of perceived threats that made their overreaction "justifiable". As a community, we cannot permit police officers to be granted immunity from responsibility for killing members of our community. Nevertheless, as a community, we must not give into the temptation to overreact, but instead to give voice to our anger by peacefully demanding reforms and reviews that will prevent this tragedy from ever happening again."
For further information, please contact Senator Rev. Diaz at 718/496-4793.