Union boss defends officer in BX woman’s shooting
The president of New York's Sergeants Benevolent Association says residents and officials are reacting too quickly to the shooting death of a mentally ill Bronx woman at the hands of an NYPD officer.
"We did not go there to kill -- that's not what happened," says Ed Mullins, the union's president. "Unfortunately, it's the nature of police work. We don't know what you want us to do. You want us to make decisions and do our job, but not every scenario is etched in stone."
Sgt. Hugh Barry shot 66-year-old Deobrah Danner twice in the stomach in her own apartment earlier this week when she allegedly swung a bat at his head. People are questioning why Barry did not use a Taser, which he was carrying, to subdue the woman.
The incident prompted protests and vigils, and Mayor Bill de Blasio and NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill both criticized the officer's actions. Police had been to Danner's apartment on prior occasions and knew of her medical history, officials say.
Black Lives Matter protesters rallied for the second-straight night Thursday. Some demonstrators characterized the shooting as "murder."
"She's 66 -- you're trying to tell me it was self-defense?" one asked.
Barry has been placed on modified duty, and the Bronx District Attorney's Office has opened an investigation into the incident.