A "formal answer" on disciplinary action is expected next week against the NYPD officer previously acquitted of murder and manslaughter for the killing of an unarmed man more than four years ago, Mayor Bill de Blasio confirmed Friday.
In 2017, a Brooklyn jury returned the verdict at the trial of Wayne Isaacs, who was off duty on July 4, 2016, when he and Delrawn Small got into a traffic dispute that authorities said continued for several blocks. Isaacs was acquitted of charges.
Small was killed on July 4 after, according to his girlfriend, he thought he was cut off on a Brooklyn street by Isaacs, who was off duty. When he got out of his car and walked up to Isaacs' vehicle at a stoplight, the officer shot him from behind the wheel.
Isaacs was on the road in civilian clothes but still carrying a handgun following a shift that ended at midnight. A passenger in Small's car told police Small grew angry because he thought Isaacs had cut him off and got out his car at a stoplight to confront the officer.
Based on preliminary evidence, including Isaacs' statements, police initially said they believed the officer opened fire after Small reached through an open driver's side window and punched the officer while he sat behind the wheel of his car.
But a short black-and-white video, which surfaced on the internet, appeared to show Small getting struck by gunfire the moment he walks up to the car window, with no clear indication that he first assaulted the officer.
In addition to his acquittal, Isaacs was cleared from an internal NYPD investigation and returned to active duty status, The Gothamist reports.
The Civilian Complaint Review Board, NYPD's oversight board, said in October 2020 it would be recommending disciplinary action following a review of the 2016 shooting.
During his weekly call into WYNC with Brian Lehrer, de Blasio promised an imminent update when asked by a listener for follow up to the Civilian Complaint Review Board's announcement in the fall.
"I had an initial conversation with the chair of the CCRB. I need to finish that conversation and we will have a formal answer next week," the mayor said.