Some of your favorite black celebrities are linking up to call for the reopening of a 10-year-old case that resulted in the death of an unarmed Black man at the hands of Pleasantville police.
On October 17th, 20-year-old Danroy “DJ” Henry Jr was shot and killed by a white officer, Aaron Hess, in New York. Henry was unarmed, and although the case made it way to the grand jury, no charges were filed.
Today, celebrities such as Rihanna, Jay-Z, Mary J. Blige, Pharrell Williams, Odell Beckham Jr, Charlize Theron, Gabrielle Union, Taraji P. Henson, and more have gathered together to sign a petition and send a letter demanding justice to Attorney General William Barr on Monday.
“As the Department knows, this agonizing case remains an unhealed wound for the Henry family and the people of New York,” the letter states. “More concerning, even a cursory review of the fact pattern of what occurred distills more questions than answers.”
The celebrities continue by urging the department of justice to take new evidence “into true account.”
“The DOJ must truthfully determine whether a pattern and/or practice of discrimination played a role in the case of DJ Henry — and if it did — deliver the justice that restores this young man’s name and reputation, while giving hope to other young black men who are just like him and desperate for change,” the letter continues.
According to an officer’s report, Danroy was out celebrating with friends when approached by police and asked to move his vehicle from the fire lane. Danroy then allegedly put his foot on the gas and rammed into two officers, causing one of the officers to shoot the college student to death.
According to witnesses, when attempting to move his vehicle, an officer stood in front of him and shot him to death.
Purportedly, ballistics bolster this hypothesis, as this theory is in accordance with the direction of the shots that were fired, and that the officers weren’t in harm’s way.
The letter ends by urging DA Barr to re-open the case and “probe the wrongful death.”
We will keep you updated on this story.