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Chong 'Confident' Grand Jury on Chamberlain Shooting Will be Thorough

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. -- White Plains Public Safety Commissioner David Chong said he anticipates a grand jury to review an in-depth presentation on an officer's shooting of Kenneth Chamberlain Sr., who died hours after the two bullets hit his chest.

"The department has turned over all evidence in its possession to the district attorney’s office. We are confident that the presentation to the grand jury will be thorough," Chong said in a statement. "We will have no further comment until the grand jury completes its investigation and its findings are made public."

Police notified the Westchester District Attorney's Office shortly after officers responding to an accidentally triggered medical alert at a Winbrook Public Housing apartment shot Chamberlain Sr., a 68-year-old retired corrections officer and former marine, on Nov. 19. District attorney office staff responded to the 135 S. Lexington Ave. scene and informed the public safety department it would be conducting a grand jury investigation days later, according to Chong.

"Since this incident occurred the city of White Plains and the White Plains Department of Public Safety have cooperated fully with the Westchester County District Attorney’s office in their investigation," Chong said in a press release.

Chong's Wednesday remarks came two days after the son of Chamberlain Sr. petitioned city hall for answers surrounding the shooting. Mayo Bartlett, a lawyer representing the family, said the Chamberlains would have more confidence that the grand jury was privy to all evidence if the district attorney's office publicly released audio from the medical alert system, video from the hallway and audio and video attached to a Taser.

“We’ve been advised by the district attorney’s office that they’re going to fully present this matter to the grand jury. If they do that, that would mean that those tapes would be played in their entirety,” said Mayo Bartlett.

The family and its attorneys were allowed to view the recordings as a courtesy, but they will not be publicly released before the grand jury presentation scheduled for sometime this month. The district attorney's office wouldn't comment on whether the tapes will be shown to the jury.

Lawyers claim the recordings document officers responding to Chamberlain Sr.'s requests to be left alone with taunts and a racial slur. Once his door was unhinged, police declined to ask Chamberlain Sr. to put his hands up and immediately fired a Taser at the unarmed man, according to the family.

Police have told a different narrative , saying officers began prying open the door because police needed to ensure the loud noises coming from the apartment weren't someone besides Chamberlain Sr. in need of assistance. Police confiscated a hatchet slid through the crack of the door and later found Chamberlain Sr. inside with a butcher's knife, according to Chong.

He ignored officer's attempts to negotiate, according to police, and wasn't subdued by a Taser and four or five shots from a beanbag gun. He was shot twice in the chest when he came at an officer with the knife, according to Chong.

Chamberlain Sr. died about two hours later while undergoing surgery at the White Plains Hospital.

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