Updated 02/05/2012 09:50 AM
Surveillance Video Shows Bronx Teen Pursued By Police Moments Before Shooting
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As the Bronx community met with the New York City Police Department on Saturday to talk about Thursday's shooting of 18-year-old Ramarley Graham, surveillance video that was released and first aired on NY1 shows the unarmed teenager entering his home moments before he was killed.
Authorities say Ramarley Graham fled from narcotics officers who approached him on White Plains Road and 228th Street in Wakefield at around 3 p.m. Thursday.
The officers put over the radio two separate times that they thought Graham had a gun. Police say they ordered the teen to stop but he went into his house on 229th Street.
Officers followed Graham into the house's second-floor bathroom, where the teen was fatally shot and found to be unarmed.
The pursuit was captured on surveillance video released on Saturday by the lawyer of the landlord of Graham's family.
In that video, Graham can be seen walking up to the house and entering through the front door. Seconds later, police officers are seen running up to the house. Some try to kick open the front door, while others search for alternate entrances.
Minutes later, the police entered the house through a first-floor entrance in the landlord's apartment and then opened the front door to let other officers enter.
"Clearly they were intent on getting into the house, they were intent on capturing this young man and they were intent on doing whatever they did. It's unfortunate,” said Neville Mitchell, the attorney for Graham's landlord.
The officers then followed Graham to the second-floor apartment, knocked and then kicked open the door and found Graham in the bathroom, where he was shot moments later.
A police officer consoles the crying six-year-old brother of Ramarley Graham, moments after the unarmed teen was shot. Click to enlarge.
Mitchell said the officers had plenty of time to calm down before entering the house.
"They're outside for some time in the front. They go to the back, which is where we're standing, and for several minutes this young man is apparently inside the house. And for several minutes there, outside the house, I don't know what they're doing there in terms of communicating with their command, or if they are talking about what's going on," said Mitchell. "What's clear, though, is that there was enough time for them to reflect on what is happening and this tragedy should not have happened."
Graham's six-year-old brother and grandmother were in the home at the time and his little brother is seen on the video being consoled by officers.
Police say they found marijuana in the home and think Graham may have been trying to flush some down the toilet when police entered the home.
Meanwhile, the local community continued to react to the shooting and met with Bronx District Attorney Robert Johnson and law enforcement on Saturday afternoon.
“What I told the community was just an outline of how we handle these cases. The fact that our presence is there, from the day of the incident we had assistant [district attorneys] there, they were there again yesterday. They've been briefing the chief of the Homicide Bureau,” said Johnson.
The NYPD is reviewing a copy of the surveillance video and is continuing to investigate. In the meantime, a police officer and a sergeant who were on the scene have been placed on modified duty.