Brooklyn District Attorney Kenneth Thompson is launching an investigation into the death of Akai Gurley, the young man shot by a rookie NYPD officer in an East New York public housing complex.
The move was commended by Rep. Hakeem Jeffries and Rep. Nydia Velazquez, who met Sunday with the D.A. to discuss the shooting.
"His death appears to be unprovoked, unnecessary and unjust," Jeffries said after meeting with the D.A. "And the community, of course, is sick and tired of being sick and tired of these types of instances of police violence."
Gurley, 28, was unarmed when probationary officer Peter Liang accidentally discharged his weapon in the stairwell Thursday night, according to the NYPD.
Liang has been placed on modified duty. He and another officer, both with less than 18 months on the force, were part of a violence reduction overtime detail on vertical patrol, conducting floor-by-floor sweeps of the Louis H. Pink Houses in East New York at around 11 p.m.
As the officers entered the eighth-floor landing on the day of the shooting, Gurley emerged on the seventh-floor landing. He heard a noise and turned to look up at the two officers a floor above him, a law enforcement source said. That's when Liang, who had his gun in his left hand and his flashlight in his right, fired accidentally, hitting Gurley 11 feet below.