The family of Kawaski Trawick is calling on the NYPD to immediately serve the charges that the Civilian Complaint Review Board (CCRB) filed against NYPD Officers Brendan Thompson and Herbert Davis for the killing of Kawaski Trawick and schedule their administrative trials.
Last week, the CCRB filed charges with the NYPD for the officers’ misconduct, including their illegal entry by force, unjustified taser use, unjustified shooting, and failure to provide medical treatment after Trawick, 32, was killed by Thompson and Davis in his apartment in 2019.
Once CCRB charges are filed with the NYPD, the NYPD must serve the charges on the individual officers, so an administrative trial can be scheduled. The NYPD has unnecessarily delayed this process in major police killing cases, including for months with Officer Wayne Isaacs who killed Delrawn Small in 2016 and almost a year for Officer Daniel Pantaleo, who killed Eric Garner in 2014. The family of Trawick and organizers are calling for Mayor Bill de Blasio, Commissioner Dermot Shea and the NYPD to serve the charges immediately, schedule an administrative trial and fire officers Thompson and Davis.
“It’s been well over two years since our son was murdered by NYPD Officers Brendan Thompson and Herbert Davis in his own home, and nobody has been held accountable,” said Ellen and Ricky Trawick, parents of Kawaski Trawick. “Mayor de Blasio and the NYPD have done nothing but obstruct transparency and mislead the public about what happened — making our family’s suffering worse. We are tired of the delays. The CCRB substantiated charges against Thompson and Davis and we demand the NYPD serve the charges and schedule an administrative trial – not months or years in the future, but immediately. Our son was cooking in his own home when Officers Thompson and Davis killed him in just 112 seconds after arriving and escalating the encounter at every turn. Brendan Thompson and Herbert Davis are a danger to New Yorkers and we demand that Mayor de Blasio stop delaying and obstructing and the NYPD fire them.”
On April 14, 2019, Trawick, was locked out of his apartment at Hill House in the Bronx. The fire department let him into his apartment. By the time NYPD officers Brendan Thompson and Herbert Davis arrived, Kawaski was already back in his apartment cooking.
After Davis broke the chain on Trawick’s door with his baton to illegally gain entry, Trawick asked the officers multiple times “Why are you in my home?” and explained, “I’m cooking.”
Both officers shouted orders at Trawick, refused to answer his questions, Thompson tased him without cause and then shot and killed him within 112 seconds of their arrival. The NYPD sensationalized the fact that Trawick was holding a bread knife to justify shooting him, but he was holding a knife because he was cooking – and didn’t pose a threat. Only one officer, Brendan Thompson, had his body-worn camera.
The NYPD refused to release full, unedited footage of the incident for almost two years – only releasing partial unedited footage to a legal organization, following a FOIL request. In December 2020, the NYPD-released a selectively edited and incomplete video of some of the body camera footage. In footage that the NYPD later released to the legal organization, officers on the scene immediately after Trawick’s killing can be heard saying, “Nobody, just a perp” in response to an officer asking who was injured. It is also clear that Thompson and Davis did not immediately provide care to Trawick after he was shot.
In April, it was made public through a ProPublica report that the NYPD found “no wrongdoing” on the part of Thompson and Davis. Trawick’s family found out about the NYPD’s refusal to discipline Thompson and Davis through the news media. The CCRB voted to substantiate charges against Thompson and Davis in June.
The charges substantiated against Thompson include use of force for shooting Trawick and tasing him without cause, and abuse of authority for entering his home and failing to obtain medical treatment after shooting him. The charges substantiated against Davis include abuse of authority for unlawfully entering Trawick’s home including when he unjustifiably used his baton to break the chain on his door and failing to obtain medical treatment.