Statement of Seymour W. James

We are pleased to hear that District Attorney Thompson will empanel a grand jury to hear the evidence in the matter of the death of Akai Gurley, an unarmed young man who was merely going down the stairwell in the Pink Houses when he was shot by Police Officer Peter Liang. However, in light of the history of grand jury presentations involving the deaths of civilians caused by police officers, and the recent failure to indict police officers in Ferguson, Missouri and Staten Island, we believe that special prosecutors should be appointed to handle police involved deaths of civilians.

We offer our condolences to the family of Akai Gurley.