Tags: new york | police | shooting | al sharpton | family

Family of Black Man Killed By NYPD to Sharpton: Stay Away

By    |   Friday, 05 December 2014 10:45 PM

The family of a man killed by a New York City police officer wants the Rev. Al Sharpton to stay away from the funeral so relatives can bury the young man "with dignity and respect," the New York Post reports.

Sharpton, who was been a front-and-center figure in the Ferguson, Missouri, and New York City cases in which white police officers have escaped indictments in the deaths of unarmed black men, had announced he'd deliver the eulogy at the funeral of Akai Gurley without consulting with his family, the Post reports.

"Who made [Sharpton] the spokesperson for our family?" Gurley's aunt, Hertencia Petersen, told the Post. "We just want to bury our nephew with dignity ad respect."

"It's been a nightmare," she added. "He just wants to take credit for this when he's never even contacted [Gurley's mother]."

Peterson said she was stunned at the announcement that Sharpton intended to give the eulogy at a Friday funeral; the family planned on a Saturday service with a speaker who knew Gurley.

"How can you do a eulogy for someone you don't even know? It's heartbreaking," she said.

Petersen told the Post if Sharpton attended the funeral, there would be "chaos."

"There is no piece of the pie for Mr. Sharpton here," she said. "It’s about control and power. We’re not here for that."

Gurley, 28, was killed Nov. 20 by rookie Officer Peter Liang, who fired blindly into a darkened housing project stairwell, later telling officers he accidentally discharged his weapon during a patrol.

Officials announced a grand jury would be convened to determine if Liang will face criminal charges.

"There is nothing in this world that can heal my pain and my heartache," Gurley’s mom, Sylvia Palmer, told the Post. "And I pray to god that I get justice for my son."

Sharpton blamed "confusion and division" within the Gurley family for the misunderstanding, and said he wouldn't be attending the funeral after all.

"I altered my schedule based on Kimberly Ballinger’s request, the domestic partner of Akai Gurley," Sharpton said, the Post reports.

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The family of a man killed by a New York City police officer wants the Rev. Al Sharpton to stay away from the funeral so relatives can bury the young man "with dignity and respect," the New York Post reports.
new york, police, shooting, al sharpton, family
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2014-45-05
Friday, 05 December 2014 10:45 PM
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