Statement from Democratic Attorney General Nominee Letitia “Tish” James on Andrew Kearse Grand Jury Decision

NEW YORK -- Today, a grand jury declined charges in the death of Andrew Kearse, who died in the custody of the Schenectady Police Department in May 2017. 

In response, Democratic Attorney General nominee Letitia “Tish” James released the following statement:

“Andrew Kearse’s death was an avoidable tragedy, and today’s decision by the grand jury only reinforces the need to make systemic reforms to our policing and criminal justice systems. No New Yorker should suffer the fate that Mr. Kearse suffered. Medical emergencies in police custody must be treated as what they are -- emergencies. The New York legislature must take action and ensure that police departments across the Empire State have policies to handle life-threatening emergencies. Lives are on the line.”