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Ramarley Graham's Mother Speaks Out: NYPD Cop Who Killed My Son Should Be Charged With Murder

We hear from Ramarley's family, a former NYPD detective, and the family attorney about why the NYPD officer should be charged for murder.

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AMY GOODMAN: Police claim that they shoot Ramarley as he is flushing a baggie of marijuana down the toilet?

CARLTON BERKLEY: OK, well, being a retired detective, right, I’m—who’s to say that that’s what Ramarley was doing? I believe—I believe there wasn’t any marijuana. You know, there’s—you’ve got to remember, this is a narcotics unit. It’s called  SNEU, Street Narcotics Enforcement Unit. Sometimes as a narcotics officer, sometimes we would have narcotics on us, which we take off of suspects. Who’s to say that somebody didn’t have a bag of weed and threw that down to try to justify them breaking in or, again, right, to victimize the victim again with this is—this is what he was doing?

JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And even by the police version, as I understand it, Haste, after shooting Ramarley Graham, then yells, "Gun!" that he yells after the fact, after he shot him?

CARLTON BERKLEY: Well, from what I heard, some people said that he didn’t hear "gun" — they never heard "gun." But police are told that when you mess something up, you’ve got to cover it up. So now when you have some time to think about it, you’re going to put your story together which coincides with what you was taught in the academy. And it’s always, "Yes, that’s the first thing I said, was 'police,' you know, 'put your hands up.'" You know, from what we understand, Haste says, "Show me your hands." In the academy, you’re not taught, "Show me your hands." In the academy, you’re taught to "Put your hands up." So, I don’t know where he got his training from. And then to come to find out, he had no training for narcotics, none at all, so he shouldn’t have been in that unit. The only way he got in that unit was either through a favor from somebody, or he knew somebody.

AMY GOODMAN: So, Constance Graham, Officer Haste was charged with first- and second-degree manslaughter. What is your reaction?

CONSTANCE MALCOLM: I thought he should have been charged with murder, because that’s how I see fit for him, because manslaughter—I just think it was murder, very simply. You can’t just kick somebody’s door in and go in and murder somebody and get a charge for manslaughter. It was so much other charges they could have charged him with, but they decided not to.

AMY GOODMAN: Chuck Berkley, you’ve arrested a lot of people over your 20-year history as a New York narcotics detective. There were a number of police officers involved with this. What happens when you would go after a group of people?

CARLTON BERKLEY Well, usually, the whole unit—in this particular case, I was expecting that that whole unit, right, would have been taken off the street, immediately.

AMY GOODMAN: That was there at the house that night—

CARLTON BERKLEY Right, if you go back—

AMY GOODMAN: —that day. What time was it, by the way?

CARLTON BERKLEY It was in the evening, like I think 3:30, around that time. But usually, you have a whole module. When something goes wrong with that module, from the highest-ranking officer to the officers, everyone is taken off the street immediately. In this case, that didn’t happen. People were still allowed to go on, right, with their routine activities. So that kind of—it kind of surprised me, because we all know that—being in the police department for over 20 years, being a member of the 100 Blacks in Law Enforcement Who Care, the National Latino Officers, we all said at times that if we had a black unit or a Hispanic unit that would have did something like this in a different neighborhood, you can rest assured all of us would have been taken off the street right away. This didn’t happen.