Brooklyn DA to investigate case of woman killed by cop
by Andrew Pavia
Aug 22, 2012 | 1476 views | 0 0 comments | 14 14 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The Kings County District Attorney's office has opened an investigation into the killing of Shantel Davis after meeting with family members and community activists who pled their case in downtown Brooklyn on Thursday, August 16.

The investigation will look into the shooting and killing of Davis, 23, on Thursday, June 14, by NYPD Detective Philip Atkins. The incident took place in East Flatbush when Atkins was pursuing Davis because she had run several red lights in a stolen vehicle. The chase came to a halt when Davis crashed the car into a minivan at the intersection of Church Avenue and East 38th Street.

Davis was shot when Atkins' gun went off as he attempted to remove her from the vehicle, but the specifics of the incident are under question, prompting the investigation.

Crystal Davis, Shatel's sister, said that her sister's spirit lives on. Her main concern was that the investigation would not be conducted “appropriately,” but she said that in her meeting with District Attorney Charles Hynes, “he assured me that it will, so I'm happy about that.”

“They killed my baby, just like that,” said Lousie Davis, Shatel's grandmother, after last week's meeting. “I want justice for my child. I love my baby. I miss my baby”

“The penalty for operating a stolen car is not death, but even more importantly than that we have not had an explanation of what caused this gun to go off,” said Sanford Rubenstein, the Davis family's lawyer.

He made it clear that the Davis family is not pursuing a civil suit.

“At this point the family is focused on this criminal investigation,” Rubenstein said. “Civilly, that's something down the road that they will consider at the appropriate time.”

Activists with “Justice For Shantel Davis” hold a vigil and a march every Saturday at noon at the location of the incident. President of the Brooklyn Chapter of National Action Network, Minister Kirsten John Foy, spoke on behalf of the family after the meeting with the D.A.

“We want this investigation to go forward, and we want all of the evidence to come out as it relates to this shooting,” he said. “There's a whole host of allegations out there. We want the district attorney to sift through them to get to the truth ,and then we can move from there.”

Foy also brought up Atkins' negative history on the force.

“He has six judgments against him for inappropriate activity, brutal activity,” he said. “What we're here to say is that this man should not have been on the street on that day.”

When asked how the meeting with the D.A. Went, Foy said, “he was completely honest. I wasn't necessarily comfortable with everything he said or the way he said it, but he was honest.”

“I'm hopeful that a competent, complete and thorough investigation will be had in this matter,” he added.

Before her death, Davis was due to appear before a a judge on charges of attempted murder and kidnapping for an incident that occurred in 2011.

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