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Giuliani, New York police under fire after shooting of unarmed man
NEW YORK(CNN) -- About 250 people demonstrated on Saturday against New York City police outside a midtown bar where a Hispanic city detective shot and killed an unarmed black man on Thursday. At least seven people were arrested for disorderly conduct.
Many in the crowd of blacks and whites held signs criticizing Mayor Rudolph Giuliani and the New York Police Department.
Patrick Dorismond, 26, was shot early Thursday morning during a scuffle with three plainclothes detectives outside the Wakamba Cocktail Lounge, two blocks south of Port Authority, the city bus station.
An attorney for the officer who fired the fatal shot said Dorismond, a security guard for a midtown business, was the aggressor and that the gun went off by accident. Witnesses have contradicted that.
The scuffle allegedly began when Dorismond became angry after one of the detectives asked if he knew where he could buy marijuana.
Al Sharpton, the civil-rights activist, expressed outrage over the shooting.
"I can't see how an unarmed man rejecting a drug deal ended up dead," Sharpton said.
Criticism has also been leveled against Giuliani and New York police for releasing the victim's criminal record, including a juvenile arrest.
Rep. Charles Rangel (D-New York) likened the release of the information on Dorismond to making public a rape victim's sexual history.
But New York City Police Commissioner Howard Safir defended the release of the man's record.
"It's the longstanding police department policy to release the background information of officers involved in a shooting incident, such as prior shootings, as well as the relevant background information of the civilian involved, such as arrest history," Safir said.
"The public has a right to know this information," he added.
Marie Dorismond, the victim's' mother, called on Friday for a federal investigation. At a news conference outside her Brooklyn home, the Haitian immigrant cried, "Somebody killed my son."
At the St. Patrick's Day parade in Manhattan on Friday, Giuliani defended the police. During a U.S. Senate campaign visit to Syracuse, New York, on Saturday, he repeated his support for the police.
"The police can't get an even break here," he said. "The reality is that people have a right to know information about the background and record of people involved in criminal incidents.
"In this particular case, this man had an extensive criminal record, including robbery, attempted robbery, drug transactions," Giuliani said.
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Official New York City Web site
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