Grand Jury Likely in NYPD Road Rage Killing of Unarmed Army Reservist: Witness said Latino Man had Hands on Steering Wheel, Never Given a Chance to Comply
From [HERE] and [HERE] Before joining the Columbus Day parade, Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly said that the moments leading up to last week’s fatal shooting of an unarmed motorist on the Grand Central Parkway in Queens remained unclear, and warrant grand jury scrutiny.
The Queens district attorney, Richard Brown, has already said that his office is investigating the shooting of Noel Polanco during an early morning traffic stop last Thursday. The family of Mr. Polanco—a member of the National Guard with no criminal record—has called for a full probe.
An investigation would likely pit Det. Hamdy's word against that of Ms. Deferrari, as their versions of events clash sharply and the incident wasn't witnessed directly by anyone else (a curious statement from the WSJ- other cops were present but they refuse to snitch, as there were two police vans carrying a "group of other officers." Killer cop Hamdy drove one of the vans and the witness said an "army of officers" swarmed the car". In fact the other passenger in Polanco's car was an off-duty NYPD officer Vanessa Rodriguez, who claims she slept through the entire thing. [MORE] White media supporting the actions of white police= white supremacy).
Police said the fatal encounter was preceded by Mr. Polanco driving erratically in a Honda Fit along the eastbound lanes of the Grand Central Parkway at about 5 a.m., twice cutting off two unmarked police vehicles carrying Det. Hamdy and a group of other officers. Mr. Polanco didn't comply with orders, delivered over the police vehicle's loud speakers, to pull over, forcing the officers to pen his vehicle in.
Once the car was stopped, Hamdy approached the Honda from the passenger side, where he shot Polanco through the open passenger-side window. Hamdy’s lawyer, Philip Karasyk, said that Hamdy believed Polanco was reaching for a gun. But a witness, Diane Deferrari, who was seated in the passenger’s seat, rebutted that account, saying the oficer fired without giving Mr. Polanco a chance to comply with his orders to put his hands up and that his hands were still on the steering wheel when he pulled the trigger."Had I moved an inch, it would probably have been me.'' [MORE] No weapon was found in the car. A small power-drill was found under Mr. Polanco's seat, police said.
Diane Deferrari, said in a phone interview last Thursday night that just before pulling the car over, officers appeared irate that Mr. Polanco had cut them off. She said that some of the officers — but not Detective Hamdy — stuck up their middle fingers and were screaming obscenities from one of the moving police trucks. [MORE]
“As soon as we stopped — they were rushing the car,” Ms. Deferrari said. “It was like an army.”
She said a group of officers swarmed the car, yelling for the three people in Mr. Polanco’s car to put their hands up. Mr. Polanco, whose hands were still on the steering wheel, had no time to comply, Ms. Deferrari said. At that instant, a shot rang out, and Mr. Polanco gasped for air, she said. [MORE]
Ms. Deferrari didn't dispute the police account that Mr. Polanco cut off the police vehicles. Police have not indicated whether any other drivers or pedestrians were affected by Polanco's driving. Nor whether he had any drugs or alcohol in his body.
After the shooting, she says one of the officers told her "your friend shot himself." Polanco's hands, she says, were on the steering wheel at all times. [MORE]
Det. Hamdy's attorney said his client was acting in an "escalating threat situation, based on the conduct of Polanco."
Mr. Karasyk said the combination of the reckless driving and the alleged "lunge" toward something under the seat led Det. Hamdy to "believe that he is about to be met with deadly force." "Det. Hamdy is very anxious to go before the grand jury and relate his version of events," he said.
A sergeant who approached the Honda with Det. Hamdy wasn't close enough to witness the moments leading up to the shooting, he said.