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Community leaders continue to seek justice for Abdul Kamal

Craig D. Frazier | 5/1/2014, 4:18 p.m.

The family of a slain Irvington man is waiting for justice after members of the Irvington Police Department killed Abdul Kamal, 30, last November while responding to a domestic violence call on Stanley Street. Three officers fired 15 shots during the incident. Kamal, who was unarmed, was hit 10 times.

Community leaders have joined in solidarity with the family to demand that the Essex County prosecutor’s office and the state attorney general’s office investigate the shooting and indict the officers involved. They say that it’s been nearly six months without any progress in the investigation.

“It is very important that we are serious about getting justice. We have to get in the streets and stay in the streets,” Lawrence Hamm, founding chairman of the People’s Organization for Progress, told the AmNews. “Police brutality has been a problem for the Black community ever since the municipal police force existed. People of color have always been unjustly targeted.”

The People’s Organization for Progress, a grassroots organization that works for racial, social, economic justice and peace, is working closely with other community’s leaders, including Irvington NAACP President Kathleen Witcher, to pursue justice for Kamal. They are urging the community to rally in support of the family on May 10 at Civic Square in Irvington, N.J.

“We will keep putting pressure on the Essex County prosecutor until the family has obtained justice in the case,” said Hamm.

Katherine Carter, a spokesperson for the Essex County prosecutor’s office, contacted the AmNews. “The investigation is active and ongoing,” said Carter via email. “The matter will be presented to the grand jury.”