The NYPD officers manning a police van that killed a Black pedestrian by running him over after speeding through red lights during a non-emergency will not be charged for his death, the New York Attorney General’s Office has announced.
The decision in the death of Ronald Anthony Smith was reached despite apparent evidence that the cop driving the van may have been distracted by watching a sporting event on his phone as he and his partner transported a prisoner on that fateful night in Brooklyn more than a year ago.
Adding insult to literal injury, Smith’s sister claims the offers never even tried to render emergency medical aid to her 54-year-old brother, who was walking in the median area of a major road in the neighborhood of Crown Heights on April 7, 2022.
It was in that context that New York Attorney General Letitia James announced Monday that her office would not be bringing any charges against the officers, identified as Orkhan Mamedov, who was driving the police van, and his partner Evan Siegel.
A report released Monday by James’ Office of Special Investigation (OSI) “determined that a prosecutor would not be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt at trial that the officer committed a crime, and therefore criminal charges could not be pursued in this matter.”
Smith’s family and advocates are outraged by the decision, ABC 7 NY reported.
“Even though they broke departmental guidelines, even though Ronald Anthony Smith is dead, the attorney general’s office is still claiming that they cannot without a reasonable doubt prosecute these officers,” said Loyda Colon, executive director of the Justice Committee, a nonprofit grassroots organization working against police violence in New York City