Monday, November 27, 2006

Shot By Police Fifty Times.

On Saturday morning Sean Bell, the father of two young children, was preparing for his big day on Sunday, when he planned to marry Nicole Paultre, his high school sweetheart and the mother of his two children.

The wedding never took place because the New York Police Department shot at Bell’s car 50 times. Four bullets ripped through Bell’s throat and torso, killing him. The shooting took place around 4 a.m. in the Jamaica section of Queens outside Kalua Cabaret, a strip club where Bell was having his bachelor party. Two of Bell’s friends were also wounded, Joseph Guzman was shot 11 times, and Trent Benefield was shot three times.

According to the NYPD the shootings occurred after Bell got into his car and bumped into a unmarked minivan that an uncover cop was sitting in. However, that account of events was disputed by one of the witnesses who wasn’t shot, Trini Wright, who works as a dancer at the club. Wright told the New York Daily News that Bell didn’t bump the unmarked minivan with his car, but that officers “jumped out shooting” from their vehicle and that there was “No ‘stop.’ No ‘freeze.’ No nothing.”

Bell’s execution-like death comes after NYPD officers killed unarmed African immigrant Amadou Diallo by firing upon him in his apartment 41 times in 1999. Four years later, Ousmane Zongo was killed by police in a raid on a warehouse where Zongo worked repairing musical instruments. Zongo was shot four times, twice in the back by officer Bryan Conroy. Conroy was in plain clothes and drew his weapon without identifying himself, and Zongo ran. Zongo’s killer, officer Conroy was convicted of criminally negligent homicide and was sentenced to five years of probation.

One does not have to look far to find other instances of police brutality against minorities to outright premeditated murder. But if we are to live in a society where we decide that we must have a group of citizens who are above the law to supposedly protect us, perhaps we should require that they can no longer carry firearms until they show the public that we can trust them enough to do so.

Until this is addressed, Sean Bell’s children will never stop screaming in horror for what was taken from them.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The sources recounted step-by-step how quickly things spiraled out of control after a dispute inside the club involving one of Bell's associates.

According to the sources, two undercovers were at the strip joint as part of the NYPD's new Club Enforcement Initiative. The program was started after the July slaying of 18-year-old Jennifer Moore of New Jersey, who partied at a New York club before being abducted, raped and killed in a Weehawken, N.J., hotel.

The undercovers, who usually worked in Manhattan, were on the last night of their two-month Queens detail to try to nail the Kalua and other clubs on such violations as drugs and underage prostitution.

Inside the club, one of the plainclothes cops sat next to a woman he thought was a hooker and might proposition him, the sources said.

Suddenly, a burly man approached them and told the woman that he had heard she had gotten into a fight with a group of guys earlier in the club. It was unclear what it was over.

The man said, "'Don't worry, baby, I got you covered,' and he takes her hand, and he rubs it across [the gun in] his waistband," a source said. "Then he tells her, 'That's what I'm here for.'"

It's unclear how the man smuggled his weapon past the metal detector outside the club. He likely was a regular who knew the bouncer at the door and may have worked there part time, helping with security, the sources said.

The undercover then went outside the club and radioed his backup to tell them there was a man inside with a gun. It was around 3:30 a.m.

While the undercover was outside, the suspect came out along with the girl and others, since it was around closing time.

The undercover watched as an argument erupted between Bell's group, which included three male pals and the beefy man with the gun, and four other men — with the woman in the middle of them, the sources said.

The woman was overheard saying to the men arguing with Bell's pals, "I'm not doing you all. I'll do one or two, but not all," according to the sources.

Around the same time, the undercover said he heard Bell's friend Joseph Guzman tell his buddies, "Yo, get my gun! Get my gun! Let's get my gun from the car! Yeah, we're gonna f- - - him up!" the sources said.

The undercover, thinking there was about to be a drive-by shooting in front of the club involving Bell's group, followed Guzman, Bell and two others to their car.

"It's getting hot! Something's going to happen! Something's going down!" the undercover radioed to his backup.

He hurried to the front of Bell's Altima, which was parked on the side of a nearby street, and jumped in front of it.

That's when the undercover put his right leg up on the hood of the Altima and began screaming that he was a cop, the sources said.

The cop was leaning over the hood of the car to try to see the hands of the people inside and make sure they didn't have any guns, they said. But Bell floored the gas pedal and headed for the cop, the sources said, striking him and badly cutting his knee.

One of the Altima's passengers — who possibly had a gun — jumped out of the back of the car, the sources said.

Around the same time, an unmarked Toyota Camry driven by a plainclothes police lieutenant and another cop behind him pulled up, but overshot Bell's car. A police van with an officer and the narcotics detective then managed to block Bell's car in.

Bell's Altima first struck the police van in the driver's desperate bid to escape, then backed up and struck the roll-down metal doors of a commercial building behind him. He then revved his car again toward the undercover — which prompted the cop to scream, "He's got a gun!" and start firing, according to the sources, with the bullets passing through Bell's car.

"The undercover thought they had more than one gun. He thought they would do anything to get away. He was yelling, 'Let me see your hands!'" one source said.

The other cops, thinking they were under attack, started firing at the car, too."

Sometimes there is more to a story than the media's immediate and emotionally charged reaction.

By the by, the cops involved breakdown as follows: 2 black, 1 hispanic and 2 white.

Of course, with all viewpoints taken into account reactionary rants and rabble rousers would have much less ground to inspire mobs to unthinking action.

And we all know how simple and clear cut a thing law enforcement in the 5 boroughs can be..

8:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


10:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

WHAT about Nicole, Jada and Jordyn? Not only has Sean become a statistic but his children and their mother also. They do not have a father and she is a single mom. Sure she may date again. She may even consider marriage but she will never be the Nicole she used to be. I don't know her but my heart breaks for her and the children. In the same token I as a black woman am very proud of her. She has such poise and class. I pray for her and her daughters. Although, Her friend, Her lover Her husband can never be replaced I pray that she will smile again and that love(The kind between a husband and wife) finds a home in her heart once more.

10:09 AM  

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