The indictment of New York Police Officer Peter Liang for manslaughter and negligent homicide in the death of Akai Gurley is dividing the Asian American community (Photo by Lauren Giaccone).
The China Daily reports that some think Liang is a scapegoat due to ongoing tensions after the fatal police shootings in Ferguson and New York.
“Why are the outcomes so different of Liang’s case compared to other police encounters that took the lives of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and Eric Garner on Staten Island?” wondered Peter Du of the Flushing Chinese Business Association.
Whether Liang is a scapegoat or not, the questions needs to be raised as to whether a grand jury is more likely to indict an Asian American police officer than a white officer.
Others, however, say race should not be part of the equation and police officers must be held accountable, regardless of their race.
“When an innocent person dies, as a police officer, you have to be accountable,” New York City Councilwoman Margaret Chin said in a statement. “At the end, maybe the sentence might be lighter, based on the situation. But there’s a responsibility there that someone has to be accountable.”
Liang was patrolling a dark stairwell in crime ridden public housing complex when he fired a single shot, hitting Gurley who was walking downstairs at the time.