Institute and Partners Respond to Release of Maurice Gordon Video
Gordon Was Fatally Shot by NJ State Trooper on May 23
NEWARK – The New Jersey Attorney General’s office Monday released video related to the shooting death on May 23 of 28-year old Maurice Gordon by Sgt. Randall Wetzel on the side of the Garden State Parkway.
The video was released after advocacy from concerned citizens throughout New Jersey.
The following can be attributed to Ryan P. Haygood, President & CEO of the NJ Institute for Social Justice; Richard T. Smith, President, NAACP New Jersey State Conference; and Rev. Dr. Charles F. Boyer, Executive Director, Salvation and Social Justice:
“As we once again confront a tragic death of an unarmed Black man by police, this time here in New Jersey two days before the death of George Floyd in Minnesota, we are guided by the need for transparency, fairness and justice.
“Responding to our collective advocacy to release the video and the involved Trooper’s name were important first steps for transparency.
“Attorney General Grewal is conducting this investigation under an Independent Prosecutor Law, and a Directive issued pursuant to it, mandating that the AG’s Office handle the investigation of deaths by police. The law was signed by Gov. Murphy in January 2019 after fierce advocacy from our organizations and partners to ensure justice in situations precisely like this one.
“The case will next go to a Grand Jury, who will decide whether to indict on criminal charges.
“Against the backdrop of a national outcry to make Black Lives Matter, we must now continue to stay vigilant and insist that here in New Jersey this investigation proceeds in a transparent and fair manner.
“We urge everyone who stood with us to advocate for an independent prosecutor bill to stand with Maurice Gordon and his family to ensure that justice be served.”