The mother of Ramarley Graham, an unarmed black teen killed by NYPD Officer Richard Haste in 2012, said Haste’s resignation is not justice for her son.
Graham, 18, was killed in February 2012 after Haste chased him into his Bronx apartment and shot him as he tried to flush marijuana down the toilet. Haste said he believed Graham was armed, but no gun was found.
The NYPD announced that Haste quit on Sunday night after an internal disciplinary trial found him guilty and recommended that he be fired.
“Five years later, again, I’m standing here with a slap in the face,” Graham’s mother, Constance Malcolm, said at a news conference on Monday. She was joined by council members Andy King and Inez Barron, as well as the co-director of the Justice Committee, an organization that speaks out against police violence.
Malcolm said Haste should not have had the chance to resign, but instead should have been fired immediately.
“They talk about bridging the gap between community and police. Start by giving us accountability,” she said. “This was a perfect case to show us that our young men and women matter when they’ve been killed unjustly by police. But instead you took the easy way out by letting this man resign.”
She also expressed frustration that she hasn’t been told whether Haste will be allowed to carry a gun again; how his benefits will be affected; and why she was not told about the judge’s decision, which was made Friday, until after Haste resigned two days later.
Malcolm is calling for the report from the trial to be released; for the other officers involved in the shooting to be fired immediately; and to meet with NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill and Mayor Bill de Blasio.
Malcolm and the Justice Committee rejected a statement released by de Blasio on Sunday, after Haste resigned, that said “the conclusion of this difficult process brings some measure of justice to those who loved [Graham].”
Malcolm said the case is not over. “How can I move forward and heal? There’s no room for that because I still have no answers,” she said. “But I guarantee I will never give up.”
The NYPD said officers who quit do not collect their full pensions, and their department guns are taken away.
Haste was indicted by a state grand jury in June 2012, but a prosecutorial error led to the case’s dismissal in May 2013. A second grand jury in August 2013 did not indict him. Graham’s family received $3.9 million from the city in a civil case settlement in 2015.