Mr Prude, a black man who had an apparent psychotic episode, died after police officers placed a reticulated hood over his head and held him to the ground

On a snowy night last March, Daniel Prude sprinted shirtless from his brother’s house in Rochester, NYDistraught, apparently in the grip of a psychotic episode, his brother called the police for help

Instead, officers handcuffed Mr. Prude, hooded him over his head and pushed him to the sidewalk until he passed out. His death – as well as what turned out to be an apparent cover-up – sparked a national reckoning of racism and police brutality

On Tuesday, New York attorney general Letitia James announced that none of the officers Mr. Prude Would Bring Charges In Connection With His Death A woman-appointed grand jury James declined to indict any of the seven on-site officials with a crime to investigate the case

“The criminal justice system has shown its unwillingness to hold law enforcement officers accountable for the unjustified killing of unarmed African Americans,” said Dr James said her voice became more emotional at a press conference held at the Aenon Missionary Baptist Church in Rochester, “What connects these cases is the tragic loss of life in circumstances where death could be avoided”

Ms. James said she plans to meet immediately with the Prude family, as well as the family of a 9-year-old black girl who was handcuffed and sprayed with pepper spray by police in the back of a Rochester police car last month

In an unusual move, Monroe District Court judge Karen Bailey Turner granted the Attorney General’s motion on Tuesday night to release minutes of the grand jury’s investigation, which are generally sealed, “The public deserves it to know what is going on behind closed doors, “said Dr James said the date for the documents’ publication has not been set

The Federal Justice Department also said it would look into the case and open up the possibility of opening a civil rights investigation into the officers serving Mr. Prude, something it has done in other high-profile murders of blacks in police custody

At the same time, Rochester braced itself for the possibility of protests against the grand jury’s decision. When it became known that an announcement was imminent in the case, concrete barriers were placed around the city’s public security building

On Tuesday evening, about 150 people marched through town denouncing the grand jury’s decision and the system that made it possible at around 9 p.m. The crowd gathered outside a police building on Child Street and sang and sang in front of a number of officers Riot gear After many of the officers re-entered the building, some of the remaining protesters walked down a nearby ramp and marched on Interstate 490 towards downtown Rochester

According to the body camera video of Mr. Prude’s death became public in the fall His name was added to a now-known list of blacks killed in interactions with police, including George Floyd, whose death in Minneapolis led to months of nationwide demonstrations. Particularly worrying about Mr Prude were pictures of him in a hood that were sent to them that were used in lynching blacks, the officers said they put a protective cover over his head after he spat on her

Ms. James said she was “extremely disappointed” that no charges would be brought against the officers involved. The seven members of the police department who came to Mr. The arrest of Prude – officers Josiah Harris, Francisco Santiago, Paul Ricotta, Andrew Specksgoor, Mark Vaughn and Troy Taladay, and Sgt Michael Magri – are on leave. An internal departmental investigation is ongoing

The Rochester Police Locust Club, the union that represents the city’s 700 police officers, declined to comment on the grand jury’s decision

Criminal charges against police officers involved in similar cases across the country were rare and called for greater accountability.Although there were notable exceptions – four Minneapolis officers were fired and charged with the death of Mr. Floyd grand juries have historically declined to indict police for fatal interactions with blacks

Ms. James noted Tuesday that legal standards can make law enforcement particularly challenging. “The system allows officers to use deadly force too often, unnecessarily and without consequence,” said Ms. Dr James said

She called for major reforms in the way police deal with people in emotional distress and are trained, and released a report that included a minute-by-minute account of Mr. Prude has not drawn any conclusions about possible crimes the police may have committed in the past few hours

Mr Prude, 41, lived in Chicago but had visited his brother in Rochester, friends said that before his death, Mr. Prude had begun to rely more heavily on the drug PCP, also known as angel dust, which can cause erratic behavior he caught started using drugs to cope with the suicidal death of his nephew, who he had lived with, in 2018

The day before the episode, his brother Joe Prude admitted him to Strong Memorial Hospital for a psychiatric evaluation, but he was sent home hours later

“The system failed at Daniel Prude, it failed when he was released from the hospital, it failed when the police responded and used deadly force against him, and it failed again today,” said Elliot Shields, an attorney for Joe Prude, on Tuesday

Just a few hours after returning from hospital on Jan. On March 1st, Mr. Prude suddenly burst out of his brother’s house and ran into the night.Fearing for his safety, his brother called 911 and was worried about Mr. Prude could accidentally injure himself or run across nearby train tracks

The police who took the call found Mr Prude naked and reported that he had told at least one passerby that he had the coronavirus when they arrested him he started spitting and officers responded by telling them pulled the net hood over his head

When he tried to get up, the officers forced Mr. Prude was lying face down on the floor, one of them pushed his head on the sidewalk.The police held Mr Prude down for two minutes and he had to be resuscitated March, in the hospital

But the circumstances of Mr. Prude’s death did not become public until September, and only after his family’s lawyers pushed for body camera footage to be released

“I made a call to get help from my brother,” Joe Prude told reporters shortly after the footage of his brother’s ordeal was released, “so as not to let my brother lynch””

News of the murder sparked protests in Rochester, a town south of Lake Ontario. In some places, police officers in protective clothing fired chemical irritants at the demonstrators, including those who remained peaceful

Records found in an internal review by Mr. Prude’s death in September appeared to indicate that Rochester officials had tried for months to suppress video footage of the encounter and misrepresented the cause of death

“We certainly do not want people to misinterpret the officers’ actions and link this incident to the recent national law enforcement murders of unarmed black men,” a Rochester deputy chief of police wrote in an email to his superior on 4 June he is told not to give the footage to the Prude family lawyer “That would be simply a false narrative and could lead to hostility and potentially violent setbacks in this community”

For months, Mr. Prude’s death had been portrayed as a deadly interaction in police accounts: the police said, Mr. Prude had overdosed on PCP.But the Monroe County coroner had Mr. Prude’s death is a murder that, according to the autopsy report, was caused at least in part by “complications of asphyxiation with physical restraint”

Revelations of the apparent cover-up have changed the city’s political order Mayor Lovely Warren, who had already suspended the seven officers, fired the chief of police and suspended several city officials shortly after the revelations

But late last year, the City’s Public Integrity Bureau, which Ms. Warren had been accused of investigating the incident as well as possible wrongdoing by her office, concluded that no city employee had been guilty of wrongdoing The 48-page report states that no one involved in the incident “violated city or ministry guidelines or ethical standards”

Cynthia Herriott-Sullivan, the city’s interim police chief, said Tuesday she understood “the collective pain of the community at this moment” and urged all protesters to be peaceful

This month, Ms. Warren submitted a draft proposal for major changes to the police force by government order to Andrew M Cuomo in response to Mr Floyd’s death that leaves communities across the state looking for ways to redefine the police force

Ms. James’ investigation was made possible by an executive order of 2015 that empowered the attorney general to investigate and prosecute police officers if an unarmed civilian is killed.Mr Cuomo signed the order after a grand jury refused to accept the New Indicting York cops for holding Eric Garner, a black man from Staten Island, in a stranglehold until his death

“Daniel Prude was in a mental crisis and needed compassion, care and help from trained professionals,” Ms. Prude said. James told James “Tragically, he did not receive any of these things.”

Daniel Prude

World News – USA – Rochester officers will not be charged with the murder of Daniel Prude

Source: https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/23/nyregion/daniel-prude-rochester-police.html