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Suspect fleeing drug bust on motorcycle meets his demise after cop hurls cooler into him, sending him flying
YouTube video, CBS New York - Screenshot

Suspect fleeing drug bust on motorcycle meets his demise after cop hurls cooler into him, sending him flying

An NYPD police sergeant is in hot water after putting a fleeing suspect on ice.

The department noted in a statement that 35-year-old Sgt. Erik Duran, a 13-year veteran with the Narcotics Borough Bronx, has been suspended from duty without pay following a Wednesday incident in which a man attempting to flee from the police on a motorcycle wound up dead.

The New York state Attorney General's Office is now leading the investigation into possible wrongdoing.

Undercover narcotics officers executed a drug bust in the University Heights section of the Bronx in hopes of capturing drug traffickers in the area, reported the New York Times.

According to officials, the 30-year-old decedent, Eric Duprey, sold drugs to one of the officers. After the exchange was made, plainclothes and undercover officers swooped in to make the arrest.

However, before police could cuff Duprey, he jumped onto a motorcycle and sped off.

Surveillance cameras captured footage of Duprey whipping perilously down a sidewalk near the corner of 190th Street. The fleeing suspect careened toward a group of roughly 10 people seated around a table as well as Sgt. Duran.

Duran reportedly grabbed a plastic cooler from the table and hurled it toward the motorcycle.

A witness told the Daily News that Duprey "was on the bike, moving north when the cops started chasing him. ... Then he took a U-turn and was riding on the sidewalk. ... The cop then took my cooler, which was filled with soda cans, water bottles, and hit him."

The sergeant's aim was good, and the suspect's handling was poor.

After being struck by the cooler, the fleeing suspect lost control, then went flying into a tree. The motorcycle carried on into a metal barricade and a Jeep Cherokee.

Officers immediately called for medical assistance, which arrived just after 5:30 p.m.. Duprey was pronounced dead minutes later.

Duprey reportedly had at least two previous arrests, including an open felony assault case from last summer and a drug case in March.

Orlyanis Velez, Duprey's widow, indicated that he left behind two children, ages 5 and 3, whom she has yet to tell about their father's death.

Duprey reportedly also had a third child, age 9.

"Officers are supposed to be protecting people, not killing people for no reason," said Velez.

The Times indicated that Duran's suspension has been criticized inside the department.

One high-ranking officer said that Duran "had attempted to make a lawful arrest" and that the sergeant's use of the cooler could "be equated to closing the door and stopping from leaving."

It appears that the hasty suspension may have been intended to put a damper on protests or worse.

An internal departmental memo obtained by the New York Post said, "We had an incident in the Bronx with narcotics that is high potential for unrest."

The memo further recommended that officers keep their protective gear and batons handy.

Sgt. Duran's lawyer Andrew Quinn indicated that his client would be exonerated, stating, "There is much more to this situation than the brief, 10-second video clip shows."

"What is undisputably clear is that the deceased, who was intent on evading arrest for selling drugs to an undercover officer, was speeding on a motorbike in an incredibly dangerous manner down a crowded sidewalk, jeopardizing the life and safety of everyone there," added Quinn.

Duran has reportedly been recognized by the force 38 times for excellent and meritorious police service.

NYPD says sergeant who threw object at suspect, killing him, is suspendedyoutu.be

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Joseph MacKinnon

Joseph MacKinnon

Joseph MacKinnon is a staff writer for Blaze News.
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