Andrew Kearse’s life was taken away at the hands of law enforcement and today, our justice system failed him once again. We must continue to fight for justice for Andrew Kearse and his family.

My heart goes out to Andrew’s wife Angie and their entire family as a Grand Jury inexplicably declined charges against the officers of the Schenectady Police Department. On video, Andrew conveyed that he was having breathing problems, and yet, in an inhumane manner, he was denied assistance and subsequently perished. The deliberate indifference to his obvious medical needs shocks the conscience. These police officers thought that because he was under arrest, he did not deserve pure decency and civility. The list of injustices in this case are extensive. Yet again, a District Attorney’s instructions and the transcript of the proceedings were not released. We therefore do not know what guidance was shared or even worse, if a charge that was difficult to prove was the only option presented for consideration.

Andrew, Angie and their family are our constituents and moreover, they are part of our community, one that is consistently faced with challenges simply to survive. Angie and their children live in public housing and have endured substandard living conditions, the most recent of which is living without sufficient gas service in their building for weeks. Now, her family must endure another reminder of heartbreak. Angie lost her husband, her children lost their father and our community has lost another Black male to unjust treatment at the hands of law enforcement.

We refuse for today’s disappointing news to be the final part of this story. Andrew Kearse will not be another number or statistic added to a growing list of Black men who are being ripped from our communities. We will continue to press forward and demand #JusticeForAndrewKearse.