Family of Kawaski Trawick responds to CCRB decision to substantiate charges against NYPD Officers

Kawaski Trawick
Photo via Slaters Funeral Home

The Civilian Complaint Review Board (CCRB) voted Wednesday to substantiate misconduct charges against NYPD Officers Brendan Thompson and Herbert Davis, who killed Kawaski Trawick on April 14, 2019.

The charges pertain to Officer Thompson’s and Davis’ abuse of authority, use of force and other misconduct in their killing of  Trawick. Thompson and Davis killed  Trawick in just 112 seconds after arriving at his apartment. Now that the CCRB has voted to substantiate charges against Thompson and Davis, the family is calling on the CCRB to swiftly file the charges with the NYPD, and the NYPD to immediately serve the charges on the officers and schedule the administrative trial.

Trawick was alone in his home when the cops broke the chain off his door, tased him and shot him multiple times, killing him. Last month, it was made public that the NYPD’s internal investigation found no wrongdoing and had imposed no discipline on Thompson and Davis.

Trawick’s parents, Ellen and Ricky, Loyda Colon, executive director of the Justice Committee,  Ileana Mendez-Peñate, Communities United for Police Reform spokesperson and Royce Russell, the Trawick Family’s attorney responded to the CCRB’s vote to substantiate charges against  the officers.

 “We’re glad the CCRB was able to see there was wrongdoing on the part of NYPD officers Brendan Thompson and Herbert Davis for murdering our son, Kawaski Trawick, but we’re shocked that these officers are still on the force,” said Ellen  and Rickly Trawick said. “We’ve watched the video of Kawaski’s killing over and over again and it’s clear that Thompson and Davis created a crisis that didn’t exist, escalated at every step and then killed our son in cold-blood – and they did this in 112 seconds.

After shooting Kawaski, Thompson and Davis made no attempt to save his life – they left him behind a closed door while they worried about themselves. Kawaski was killed while he was cooking in his own apartment – where he would have been safe if it weren’t for Officers Thompson and Davis. Our son should be alive and Brendan Thompson and Herbert Davis must be fired. We’re demanding that the CCRB move swiftly to file the formal charges with the NYPD and that Mayor de Blasio and the NYPD waste no time serving the charges on Thompson and Davis so the discipline trial can move forward.”

More Information on Kawaski Trawick:

On April 14, 2019, Trawick, 32, 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, Trawick was already back in his apartment cooking.

Trawick asked the officers multiple times “Why are you in my home?” and explained, “I’m cooking.” The officers repeatedly escalated the incident including Davis using his baton to break the chain on Trawick’s door to enter the apartment, both Davis and Thompson refusing to answer him when he repeatedly asked “Why are you in my home?”. Both officers shouted orders at Trawick, refused to answer his questions, and Thompson tased him without cause, and then shot and killed him within 112 seconds of their arrival. The NYPD sensationalized the fact that he was holding a bread knife to justify shooting him, but he was holding a knife because he was cooking. 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 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 if anyone 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.


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