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NYPD officer stopped a drug suspect by hitting him with a cooler, the incident now ruled a homicide


Rebecca White and Rocco Parascandola
New York Daily News

Blunt force injuries to the head caused the death of Eric Duprey, the Bronx drug suspect killed when an NYPD officer flung an ice cooler at him as he tried to flee on a scooter, the city’s medical examiner said Friday.

Duprey’s death was a homicide, the medical examiner said.

Sgt. Erik Duran, an NYPD Bronx narcotics veteran with 13 years on the police force, was suspended without pay just hours after the incident Wednesday.

An NYPD official earlier told the New York Daily News that Duran’s use of force was outside department guidelines. ”We don’t train officers to pick up something and throw it at a suspect,” the official said.

Duprey’s family has hired a law firm, Talkin, Muccigrosso & Roberts, to pursue its civil case against the city.

“It’s tragic that yet again a poorly trained NYPD officer has taken the life of another young man so unnecessarily. We plan to seek justice for the family,” lawyer Jonathan Roberts said Friday.

“We plan to thoroughly investigate and seek justice,” Roberts said. “There’s no justification. Suffice to say, this is not proper procedure.”

Members of Duprey’s family attended a memorial event Friday. They declined to speak to reporters.

Attorney General Letitia James’ office opened an investigation of Duprey’s death on Wednesday.

Duran’s police record includes five cases before the Civilian Complaint Review Board. One of those cases, in 2021, resulted in discipline, when Duran was found to have committed abuse of authority in an unlawful street stop. The incident resulted in Duran losing vacation days.


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