Protest erupts after state rules out criminal charges against officers in Buffalo man’s death

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Angry protestors made their feelings known outside Buffalo Police Headquarters Wednesday night.

Ten months after unarmed 20 year-old Wardel Davis died in police custody, Attorney General Eric Schneiderman revealed both Buffalo Police officers, Todd MCcalister and Nicholas Parisi will not face criminal charges.

Davis died while being arrested on the city’s west side in February. He was approached because the officers suspected him of drug activity.

Davis’ death has sparked anger from many in the Queen City, calling for more police oversight.

Dozens protested after the findings in the investigation were revealed.

“It’s amazing how hard it is to punish officials who do wrong,” said protester Heron Simmonds.

“Who else is it going to happen to? I only live a few blocks that this happened to Meech (Davis),” said Brenda Miller-Herndon, protestor.

The 61 page report on the investigation revealed Davis struggled with the officers before suffering an asthma attack, which was ultimately deemed the cause of death.

The AG’s Office says a lack of eyewitnesses and video made the investigation especially hard.

Some say they don’t think body cameras would’ve changed the outcome.

“I don’t ever think those work because you can turn them off,” said Miller-Herndon.

Wednedsay evening protesters walked around with signs that read ‘end stop and frisk policy.’

“A young man was stopped and asked and patted down for no reason, it was an unconstitutional stop,” said Shaketa Redden, protestor.

The attorney for the police union, Tom Burton says it was not a random stop. “They knew this guy was involved with some level of narcotics dealing and while it was sad to have the outcome that occurred here, they didn’t do this randomly.”

Protestors told News 4 the police department needs more training.

“I want to see fundamental change in the way we do policing, we need more training, we need true community policing. If you look at what we actually invest in, it’s wrong,” said Simmonds.

Many are now calling on Buffalo Police Commissioner Daniel Derenda to make a change.

“We want these officers fired, we want it to happen, it needs to happen,” said Redden.

In a written statement, Commissioner Derenda thanked the Attorney General’s Office for their complete and thorough investigation. He says the department is reviewing the report and conducting an internal investigation.

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