An off-duty NYPD officer accused of fatally shooting an unarmed man last year was acquitted of all charges by a Brooklyn jury on Monday.
Wayne Isaacs had faced charges of second-degree murder and first-degree manslaughter for the death of 37-year-old Delrawn Small in East New York on July 4, 2016.
"Wayne Isaacs went home to his family, and he killed someone. Delrawn didn't kill anyone," Small's sister Victoria Davis said, in tears.
A surveillance video played for jurors appeared to show that Small was shot almost immediately after he approached Isaac's car.
Prosecutors said it was a fit of road rage, but Isaacs testified that he fired only after Small punched him in the face.
Isaacs had faced 25 years to life in prison.
Small's family and supporters were in tears outside the courtroom after the jury reached the not guilty verdict.
The officer was hugged by a defense lawyer and was then rushed out of the building to avoid any confrontation with Small's outraged relatives.
"Decided not to pull out his badge, not to roll up his window, not to drive off, not to show his department ID, but to pull a damn gun out. And he's not a murderer?" said Victor Dempsey, Small's brother.
The jury of whites, blacks, one Asian, and one Hispanic deliberated over parts of three days.
Patrolmen's Benevolent Association President Patrick J. Lynch said, "There are no winners or losers in a trial like this whenever a life is lost under any circumstances. We are grateful to the jury for weighing all of the evidence in this case and for arriving at a proper and just verdict. No police officer wants to carry the burden of having killed a person under any conditions. But unfortunately, there is no script for police officers who have to take action when they are presented with dangerous circumstances either on or off duty."
This was the first time the state attorney general's office prosecuted a police-involved shooting, instead of a local district attorney.
In a statement, State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said, "We are disappointed by the verdict, but we respect the jury's determination and thank them for their service. I also want to thank the family of Delrawn Small for their courage and perseverance in the face of tragedy. My office will continue to investigate these cases without fear or favor and follow the facts wherever they may lead."
The NYPD said Isaacs will remain on a non-enforcement duty status while the department conducts an internal investigation, and he will no longer have a service weapon. The department will then decide if Isaacs should be disciplined.
"I do not want him receiving one more tax dollar," Davis said.
Small's family said they want Isaacs fired.