Rihanna & Jay-Z Demand Department Of Justice Reopen Case Of Black College Student Danroy “DJ” Henry Jr, Killed By White Police Officer
Jay – Z and Rihanna are among a list of celebrities who are demanding the Department of Justice to investigate the death of an unarmed black Pace University junior who was fatally shot by a white Westchester cop in 2010.
A letter was sent Monday (July 14th) to the US Attorney General William Barr, urging the Justice Department to reopen the case of Danroy “DJ” Henry’s killing and find possible police misconduct. The letter was signed by Robyn “Rihanna” Fenty, Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter, Pharrell Williams, Charlize Theron, Taraji Henson, Odell Beckham Jr., Michael Williams, Kerry Washington, Mary J. Blige and Gabrielle Union. It reads,
“The facts support this request, the law all but requires it, and justice — it demands it,”
The letter also questions if there was a pattern of discrimination that led to Danroy Henry’s killing.
“If it did — deliver the justice that restores this young man’s name and reputation, while giving hope to other young black men who are just like him and desperate for change,”
Henry’s father, Danroy Henry Sr., says the family is grateful for the support from the A -list celebrities.
“We appreciate that they’re sort of leaning into the moment and that they’re willing to stand behind us on this really important matter.”
The fatal incident took place on Oct. 17, 2010, after Westchester cops responded to reports of a rowdy crowd outside Finnegan’s Grill, a popular hangout for Pace students.
Danroy Henry, 20, was unarmed and in his car when an officer knocked on his window. Police say that Danroy Henry pulled away, following being approached by police. According to reports,
“Pleasantville Police Officer Aaron Hess initially said he stepped in front of Danroy Henry’s car, which “plowed” into him, sending him onto the roof.
The family’s attorney, Michael Sussman, said in civil filings that Henry was driving slowly when Hess lunged at the car and fired through the windshield, killing Henry and wounding his pal.
Another officer, Ronald Beckley, who discharged his weapon that night, told his supervisor he had fired at Hess, who he said was the aggressor, to stop him — but his statement was later altered.”
The civil suit alleged that two other officers pulled Henry, from his car, handcuffed him and left him on the ground to bleed to death.
A grand jury declined to indict Police Officer Aaron Hess in 2011, and in 2015 the US Attorney’s Office said it would not bring federal charges against the officer.
A grand jury ultimately cleared Hess of any wrongdoing.
Danroy Henry’s parents filed a civil rights lawsuit against officer Hess, claiming that he violated their son’s civil and constitutional rights. They also demanded compensation for their son’s death.
In 2o11 Kanye West and Jay-Z dedicated a song from their album “Watch the Throne” to Danroy Henry.
“Bloody murder, murder, murder,” Jay-Z raps, he adds, “This is to the memory of Danroy Henry” on the track “Murder to Excellence.”
Here is footage from the incident:
What are your thoughts on Rihanna, Jay-Z and other celebrities, demanding justice for Danroy Henry’s death? Let us know in the comments!