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Fatal police shooting unjustified, officials say

A police officer on routine patrol killed a man at a public housing project early Saturday, and the police commissioner said later that the shooting was not justified.

The Housing Authority officer, who was not identified, had never before fired a shot on duty in his 11{-year career, Commissioner Raymond Kelly said.

The officer and his partner were patrolling the housing project when they encountered Timothy Stansbury Jr., 19, who was going up a stairway to the roof to cross to another building shortly before 1 a.m., Kelly said.

The officer was standing 3 to 4 feet from Stansbury when he fired one round into the man's chest, the commissioner said.

"At this point, based on the facts that we have gathered, there appears to be no justification for this shooting," Kelly said. "This is a tragic incident that compels us to take an in-depth look at our tactics and training, both for new and veteran officers."

The officer was placed on restricted duty and his gun and badge were taken away, authorities said. The second officer was placed on administrative desk duty.

Stansbury's family members said the young man had no criminal record and was well liked.

"They're killing us like dogs out here, pure dogs!" said Stansbury's mother, Phyllis Clayburne, a Police Department crossing guard. "It's not right and it needs to stop."

Police said the teenager had been at a party and crossed to another building to visit someone else. He was coming through a doorway when the officer looked in and shot him, police said.

Stansbury ran down five flights of stairs and collapsed in the lobby, Kelly said. Stansbury was taken to Woodhull Hospital, where he died.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg attended a briefing on the shooting at police headquarters, then visited Stansbury's mother, father and grandmother to express his condolences, said Ed Skyler, Bloomberg's spokesman.