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NYPD shooting victim’s family: Stay away, Sharpton!

NYPD shooting victim’s family: Stay away, Sharpton!

The family of police-shooting victim Akai Gurley had a message on Friday for the Rev. Al Sharpton: Keep your “circus” away from his funeral!
The blowhard opportunist muscled his way into the arrangements — and even put out press releases promising to deliver the eulogy — without ever consulting the family or offering to foot the bill.
But Gurley’s relatives told Sharpton to stay away rather than turn the somber ceremonies into a spectacle.
“It’s been a nightmare,” Gurley’s aunt, Hertencia Petersen, told The Post. “He just wants to take credit for this when he’s never even contacted my sister [Gurley’s mother].
“Who made you the spokesperson of our family? We just want to bury our nephew with dignity and respect.”
Petersen was stunned that Sharpton and his National Action Network billed him as the eulogist for a Friday funeral, when they were planning on a Saturday service and wanted a speaker who actually knew Gurley.
“How can you do a eulogy for someone you don’t even know? It’s heartbreaking,” she said.
By late Friday, Sharpton accepted a rare defeat and backed off, though he blamed it on “confusion and division” within the Gurley family.
He said he would not attend Saturday’s 11 a.m. service at Brown Memorial Baptist Church in Brooklyn — and even backed off the Friday wake.
Gurley, 28, was shot and killed on Nov. 20 at Brooklyn’s Louis Pink Houses by rookie cop Peter Liang, who fired blindly into the darkness of an unlit stairwell.
Liang, who had been on a patrol at the East New York housing project, told officers it was an accident.
The Brooklyn district attorney plans to present evidence to a grand jury to determine whether Liang will face criminal charges, officials said Friday.
Gurley’s mom, Sylvia Palmer, spoke about her son’s death publicly for the first time Friday and said she is putting her faith in the courts.
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Akai GurleyPhoto: Facebook
“There is nothing in this world that can heal my pain and my heartache,” Palmer said. “And I pray to God that I get justice for my son.”
Gurley had made plans to drive to Florida to visit Palmer for Thanksgiving. Instead, Palmer flew to New York to bury her son.
She got no help from Sharpton, even as he grabbed headlines with his bluster in the days following the shooting.
Petersen, her sister, turned to her own health-care union, SEIU 1199, to pay for Palmer’s travel arrangements.
“National Action Network would have held the funeral without them,” said Malkia King, president of the union’s benefits fund, who helped raise the $6,000 needed to pay for flights and a hotel room for Palmer and other relatives.
Petersen fumed that Sharpton is just a publicity hound who never mourned her dead nephew.
“There is no piece of the pie for Mr. Sharpton here,” she warned, adding that whenever the rev. sticks his nose in tragedies, “It’s not pretty — there’s confusion.”
She said that Saturday service would have been “chaos” if Sharpton showed up.
“It’s about control and power,” she said. “We’re not here for that.”
In the press release sent around Friday, Sharpton said he would spend Saturday on Staten Island with the families of Eric Garner and Trayvon Martin and the lawyer for the family of Ferguson police-shooting victim Michael Brown.
“I altered my schedule based on Kimberly Ballinger’s request, the domestic partner of Akai Gurley,” Sharpton claimed.




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