The New York Police Department says 17-year-old Hakeem Kuta, who was being chased by cops who were in the process of making a marijuana bust in The Bronx has died.
Police spokesman Stephen Davis said officers gave chase to a group of teenagers up a flight of stairs of an apartment building after someone complained that they were smoking marijuana.
According to Davis, when the officers got to the roof, some of the teens had already jumped to another roof and ran away. But Kuta was pinned in by a dividing wall and shuffled backward over a ledge and fell.
The NYPD has issued a statement explaining the official version of what happened last night:
On Thursday, April 2, 2015 at approximately 1935 hours, four uniformed Impact officers assigned to the 52 Precinct were on foot patrol, walking along Valentine Avenue when they were approached by an unidentified male, black, approximately 40, outside of 2685 Valentine Avenue. The male informed the officers that there was a large group (16 to 19 years old) hanging out in the lobby and smoking marijuana inside the building. After being alerted of this situation, the officers walked to the building to investigate the allegation.
When the officers reached the location they encountered a male with his arms stretched across the entrance of the building attempting to prevent them from entering the location and giving the group an opportunity to flee. Officers ordered the male to remove his arms and entered the building. Police Officers Maria Imburgia and Brian Mahon remained with three individuals (two males and one female) that were in the lobby, while the officers Eduard Solano and Edmundo Rivera followed several males up the south side staircase and entered an alarmed doorway to the roof.
Once on the roof, the officers observed two males run toward the north side. Officers verbally commanded the males to stop, at which time one of the males, a male, black, 17, climbed over a 2-3 foot wall apparently attempting to escape the police. The second male attempted to offer the male, 17, support, but started to lose his footing. Realizing what was occurring, Police officer Rivera grabbed onto the second male to prevent him from falling over the edge. The male, 17, unable to hold on, fell six stories from the roof.
Police Officers Rivera and Solano immediately ran down the stairs, and alerted Officers Imburgia and Mahon, who were inside the lobby that the male had fallen and was in the alleyway of the building. All four Officers responded to the alleyway where the male was observed on the ground, to render aid. At 1937, the Officers notified the dispatcher and requested EMS.
Officer Imburgia, performed chest compressions and cradled the male’s head, while awaiting the arrival of EMS. The male, 17, was removed to St Barnabas hospital in critical condition. During the course of rendering aid to the male, the second male on the roof left the scene. As officers were conducting a canvass at the location, a male, black, 14, approached the detectives and stated that he was the second male on the roof when the male, 17, fell. There has been no arrest and the Investigation is being conducted by the Internal Affairs Bureau.