Officer Who Killed Akai Gurley Sentenced to Community Service and Probation

Illustration for article titled Officer Who Killed Akai Gurley Sentenced to Community Service and Probation

Peter Liang, the officer who fatally shot Akai Gurley in a dark Brooklyn public house stairwell in 2014, has been given five years probation and 800 hours of community service. Gurley, 28, was unarmed.


On Tuesday, according to the New York Daily News, Liang apologized to Gurley’s family and said “the shot was accidental.” In Brooklyn Supreme Court judge Danny Chun’s ruling, he said that Liang didn’t look like “shooting and killing someone” was his intention from video he viewed of the officer entering the Pink House project building where Gurley died, adding that “incarceration is not necessary.”

Gurley’s family and protestors outside the court house felt differently.

“We are sick and tired of police officers not being held accountable for the killing of civilians,” said 34-year-old protester Rodrigo Starz.

For Liang’s side, some 100 protestors were on hand to support the judge’s light ruling. After securing a guilty verdict of manslaughter, which carries a sentence of 15 years behind bars, in a last-minute twist Brooklyn District Attorney Kenneth Thompson suggested the officer instead receive just six months of house arrest and 500 hours of community service. In lieu of jail time, Judge Chun reduced Liang’s conviction to criminally negligent homicide with probation and 300 more hours of community service.

Liang is the first New York City cop in ten years to be convicted in a fatal shooting incident.

Image via Getty.


how was this even a possible result? he was convicted of killing a person. it was not in self-defense, or in the line of duty. how is it legal for the court itself to negate the guilty verdict returned by the jury after it was reached?

i can keep on saying it til i’m blue in the face. training will not stop cops from just killing whoever they feel like killing. police will not stop shooting dead unarmed civilians while on camera until they face the same justice as the rest of us.

this is a conviction in name only. he’s going to walk right on out of the courthouse and go straight home. akai gurley remains dead, for no reason.