Bronx Teenager Who Fell From Roof While Fleeing the Police Dies

By Michael Schwirtz

A Bronx teenager who fell off the roof of a six-story apartment building on Thursday while fleeing police officers died of his injuries on Saturday April 4 at St. Barnabas Hospital, the police said.Authorities said Hakeem Kuta, 17, was with a group of other teenagers who were smoking marijuana Thursday evening in the lobby of the apartment building at 2685 Valentine Avenue in the Bronx. A man who exited the building complained to four uniformed officers,who then entered the lobby. When Mr. Kuta and several others ran to the roof, two officers chased them.
All but Mr. Kuta and a 14-year-old were able to elude the police. With officers shouting, “please don’t move,” Mr. Kuta tried to step over a short wall at the edge of the building but stumbled, officials said. The 14-year-old grabbed for Mr. Kuta’s vest as he fell, officials said, but he was not able to hang on. The Police Department said that the officers appeared to have acted appropriately. After Mr. Kuta fell, officers raced from the roof to give first aid, officials said. Officer Maria Imburgia applied chest compressions until paramedics arrived.
Officers made no arrests on Thursday evening, though marijuana was found in the lobby.
Marijuana arrests have plummeted since November, when Mayor Bill de Blasio instituted a policy making possession of 25 grams or less punishable with a ticket, not criminal charges. People who are caught smoking marijuana in public, though, still face arrest.
Mr. Kuta had no criminal record, officials said. A relative, Abdallah Dopo, said the teenager had been born in Ghana and had moved to the United States about three or four years ago with his parents and a younger sister.

The New York Times

Posted by on Apr 18 2015. Filed under Community News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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