Hardbeatnews, NEW YORK, N.Y., Tues. Nov. 28, 2006: The victims of Saturday’s police shooting case in Queens, New York had previously argued with two Guyanese men prior to entering their car, reports indicate.
Slain groom Sean Bell, along with Trent Benefield and Joey Guzman, reportedly got into a verbal argument with a gangster named J-Rock and another man, both nationals of Guyana, a witness told the New York Daily News yesterday.
The argument apparently began in the Kalua Cabaret, a Jamaica, Queens strip club where Rock reportedly threatened to “pop off,’ indicating he had a gun. But the group was soon ordered to leave by the club’s bouncer and the argument reportedly spilled out into the streets.
Outside, Guzman apparently said, “I’m going to f–k him up!,” a comment directed to one of the Guyanese men. He then supposedly made a gun signal with his hand.
The three then made it into their own car and were trying to leave the area when they were reportedly hailed by a “tall figure,” who called out “Yo, my man, come here, my man, let me holler at you.”
But Bell, Guzman and Befeld saw something they apparently thought was a gun and tried to drive off when cops opened fire. Eyewitness accounts indicate the seven plain clothes cops working the sting operation did not identify themselves as cops until after the shooting, which included one cop firing 31 times. Five of the cops who fired included who white cops, two black and one Hispanic.
Meanwhile, Jamaican-born Councilmember Leroy Comrie, is among those offering condolences to the Bell family while also calling for a review of NYPD procedures. Comrie’s comments came hours after Mayor Mike Bloomberg and Police Commission Ray Kelly met with him and a number of community activists at City Hall, in an effort to stem the outrage over the 50 shots fired by police on Bell and his two friends.
Bloomberg, at a news conference after the meeting, commented, “I can tell you that it is to me unacceptable or inexplicable how you can have 50-odd shots fired, but that’s up to the investigation to find out what really happened.’ But he added, “The police department’s policy on shooting when a car is being used as a weapon is clear. It would appear that the policies of the police department were broken, but we don’t even know that because there were allegations of a gun.”
Councilmember Comrie for his part said the “… situation is a clarion call for the need for constant, stronger public review and governmental oversight of NYPD training and tactics.”
“Sean Bell and his family paid a horrible price for the unwarranted, and possibly illegal, actions of these officers,” he added. “As an African American male and as the father of an African American male, I am extremely sensitive to the history of police brutality and racial profiling in our community and I am outraged about Sean’s senseless death. … It is my hope that in the coming weeks, the City Council and all other levels of government will examine the circumstances of this case and demand a full explanation.”
But he urged for Mayor Bloomberg and Queens District Attorney Richard Brown to be given n opportunity to fulfill their promises to deliver a thorough investigation.
Yesterday, on Power 105 FM, Bell’s fiancée, who was set to walk down the aisle Saturday, called the cops who shot her husband, “ murderers.”
“They are not officers,” said Nicole Paultre. “No one gives anybody the right to kill somebody, to take someone’s life. They don’t know what they’ve done. What pain they’ve caused to this family. To my kids.”
Bell had fathered two kids with Paultre before proposing. The wedding was set for Nov. 26th. Hardbeatnews.com