Innocent Bystander Dies In NY
Published: August 29, 2015
Innocent Bystander Dies In NY, A man who was shot by an NYPD officer in a bungled attempt at a gun bust died Saturday morning.
Felix Kumi, 61, was hit by several rounds after an undercover cop missed his target and hit him instead.
The officer, who has not been named, was aiming for a suspect involved in the gun bust in Mount Vernon, Westchester County.
Alvin Smothers, 37, reportedly aimed a gun at the officer, who fired 11 rounds at him in response.
Scene: An NYPD officer killed an innocent bystander in an undercover operation gone wrong. Felix Kumi, 61, died early Saturday after being hit near his home in Mount Vernon, New York
Blunder: The unnamed officer was trying to hit suspect AlvinSmothers, whom police say had just threatened him during a gun deal
Three of the shots his Smothers, while at least two went astray and hit Kumi, who was standing behind him. Officers later found that Smothers’ gun was a fake.
Both Kumi and Smothers were taken to Jacobi Hospital in the Bronx. Kumi was pronounced dead just after midnight, while Smothers is reportedly in a stable condition. The officer wasn’t hurt.
According to the NYPD, the killer officer was trying to set up a suspected gun dealer in a months-long undercover operation.
Suspect Jeff Aristy, 28, contacted the officer with an offer of guns for sale, then drove him from the Bronx to Mount Vernon to carry out the deal, police said.
After Aristy parked his car, Smothers, the second suspect who was shot, allegedly got into the back seat and pointed the fake gun at the officer’s head, demanding money.
Fake: Police found the gun (above) Smothers pointed at their officer before the shooting – then realized it is a fake
The officer handed over a wad of cash, waited for Smothers to flee, then chased after him, police said.
During the chase, Smothers is said to have turned round and aimed the replica weapon at the officer, prompting him to open fire – hitting both the suspect and Kumi, a local man who happened to be in the area.
Witnesses reported 12 shots were fired during the incident, which took place near the intersection of Beekman Avenue and Pease Street in a residential neighborhood.
In response to the sting-gone-wrong, Mount Vernon Police Commissioner Terrence Raynor said: ‘Things went awry, and shots were fired.’
After the encounter, the NYPD retrieved their money – $2,400, according to the New York Post – and also Smother’s gun, which they learned was fake.
Aristy fled the scene during the chaos of the gunfight, but was later caught and arrested. He has been charged with two counts of criminal sale of firearms and four of criminal sale of a controlled substance.
As of Saturday morning, the NYPD said Smothers had also been arrested and is awaiting charges.
The department said it is investigating the incident and could not say what will happen to the officer.
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