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No charges in Kawasaki Trawick case

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Milledgeville native was fatally shot by New York officers in 2019

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The Bronx District Attorney’s Office in New York last week declined to pursue criminal charges against the two police officers involved in the shooting death of Milledgeville native Kawasaki Trawick, who was 32.

Trawick grew up in Milledgeville and moved to New York in 2016 to pursue a dance career. He is survived by his parents, Ricky and Ellen Trawick, as well as a host of other family members.

Trawick lost his life on April 14, 2019, when he was shot twice inside of his apartment by a New York City police officer. According to an article by NBC’s New York network affiliate, “records showed that Trawick had called the fire department that night because he feared the food he was cooking was on fire after he got locked out of his apartment. Separately, the building superintendent had call 911, saying Trawick was banging on doors, harassing neighbors. When the FDNY arrived, firefighters opened Trawick’s door and he was able to get back inside without incident. Minutes later, police arrived and officers Thompson and Davis tasered Trawick after he came at them with a wooden stick and a knife, police said. Trawick fell to the ground and when the officers moved in to arrest him, he got up and threatened the cops, the NYPD said. Thompson later fired his gun at Trawick, striking the dance aerobics instructor twice. Trawick died at Bronx Lebanon Hospital.”

Following last week’s decision, Ellen Trawick gave a statement to members of the New York press.

“After meeting with DA (Darcel) Clark’s staff, viewing surveillance and body camera footage and listening to 911 calls, it is 100 percent clear to me and my family that Kawaski should be alive today. The officers who killed my son escalated the situation every step of the way by opening the door to his home while he was cooking, then yelling commands at him while he was nowhere near them, then tasing him while he posed no threat and then shooting him. They rendered no aid and let him die on the floor.”

Added Ellen Trawick: “My family deserves to be treated better than this, but most of all, my son deserved better. Kawaski always stood for what he believed was right. It is not right that he was living at Hill House to get support but they called the police on him, when they could have helped him get back into his apartment when he needed to. It’s not right that the NYPD showed up, entered his home while he was not a threat to anyone, barked orders at him, tased him, and gunned him down. If Kawaski were with us today, I know he would be demanding accountability and change so that what happened to him doesn’t happen to others.”