A New York Assemblyman has warned of "inevitable" violence if ex-NYPD officer Peter Liang is not sentenced to jail time for the 2014 death of 28-year old Akai Gurley. Liang was convicted of second-degree manslaughter last month.
The incident unfolded as Liang and a partner were patrolling a darkened stairwell at the Louis H. Pink Housing complex. Liang discharged his duty weapon and a ricocheting bullet struck Gurley, killing him.
Gurley was unarmed at the time of the incident.
Although Liang was convicted last month and could face up to 15 years in prison, Brooklyn DA Ken Thompson has recommended no jail time for the ex-officer, instead suggesting a sentence of 500 hours community service, five years probation, and six month's home confinement.
Assemblyman Charles Barron voiced his displeasure at the suggested sentence. "Some of our people are saying an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, a life for a life. Even Martin Luther King — the prince of peace — said that riots are the voices of the unheard," said Barron.
DA Thompson's recommended sentence is just that - a recommendation. The decision will ultimately rest on the shoulders of Judge Danny K. Chun. Judge Chun is scheduled to sentence Liang on April 14.
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