Carol Gray, the mother of Kimani Gray, who was shot dead by police officers in Brooklyn, New York, last week, spoke out about the violence that has followed the incident at a press conference on Thursday.
She also tearfully described the struggle of having to bury another son. Two years ago her oldest son was killed in a car accident.
“I don’t condone any riots, any looting, any shooting, anything against any police officers,” said Gray, according to the New York Daily News.
The Associated Press reports:
"Today was very hard," she said, and paused for a long moment before she was able to finish the sentence. "I had to choose the color of the casket that I wanted."
The teenager's death has provoked outrage in East Flatbush, the working-class area of Brooklyn where he lived and died, a place that is among the city's most dangerous neighborhoods. Long-simmering resentment against the police officers who patrol these streets has erupted into violence in recent days, with 46 people arrested in the most recent protest on Wednesday night.
A police officer was hit by an object tossed from a building during the protest and suffered a gash in his face.
Gray, who was Black, was with a group on Saturday night but left when he saw officers in an unmarked car, police said. The plainclothes officers, who were Black and Hispanic, approached him because he was acting in a suspicious manner, police said.
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Gray's mother also wants to understand why her son was struck by more than one bullet to disarm him. Kenneth Montgomery, the family's lawyer, is questioning the police's account of how he died and how the gun was recovered.
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(Photo: Lucas Jackson/Reuters/Landov)