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Funeral held for Brooklyn teen shot by police

WNBC

Mourners gathered at a Brooklyn church Saturday for the funeral of Kimani Gray, a 16-year-old boy who was shot and killed by police.

The teen's funeral was being held at St. Catherine of Genoa Roman Catholic Church, not far from where the teen was killed.

Gray was shot by two officers in the neighborhood of East Flatbush on March 9 after police said he pulled a gun on them. But the teen's family has been demanding an independent investigation into the shooting, arguing that no witnesses saw Gray pull out a gun.

The shooting set off a series of protests in East Flatbush last week.

The New York Daily News reports the two officers involved in the shooting have been sued in the past for alleged civil rights violations. They are on desk duty while the NYPD and the Brooklyn District Attorney's Office investigates.

The teen was with a group of people the night of March 9, but left when he saw police in an unmarked car, police said. Authorities said he was acting suspicious when plainclothes officers approached him.

Read more on NBCNewYork.com

According to police, Gray pointed a .38-caliber revolver at them, and they opened fire. He was pronounced dead at a hospital.

A gun was recovered at the scene, according to police.

The medical examiner's office ruled that Gray was hit seven times, and had wounds in both the front and back of his body, including his shoulder, rib cage, forearm and legs.

Gray was black. The officers involved in the shooting were black and Hispanic.

A police officer may use deadly force when the officer has a reasonable fear of serious injury or death. Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said the shooting appeared to be within those guidelines.

But supporters of Gray maintain he wasn't armed. His mother has said she also believes he was not, and said he left the house Saturday afternoon like it was any other weekend, heading out to hang with friends.

Hundreds turned out at a wake Friday for Gray. A woman attending the wake at Caribe Funeral Home described the service as "very emotional."

"I can't sit in there for too long without crying," said Fatimah Shakur of Bedford-Stuyvesant. "Someone has to bury their child."

NBCNewYork.com