Updated 08/20/2011 11:20 AM
Funeral held for man shot during confrontation with police
One week after Luis Rivera was shot and killed in a confrontation with police in Schenectady, loved ones gather to say goodbye. As our Lori Chung reports, the NAACP is planning to push for an independent investigation into the series of events that led to his death.
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ALBANY, N.Y. -- Mourners gathered in Albany bearing flowers and flags of Luis Rivera's native Puerto Rico, sharing memories of the father of three who they say was in the midst of getting his life together.
"I grew up with him as a child and he was just always there for everybody. He didn't deserve this," said Kayla Allen.
"He was a human being with love and compassion who had a beautiful family that loved him so much," said Treasure Clayton.
Rivera was shot to death during a confrontation with three Schenectady police officers who were answering a call for an armed man. Officials say Rivera ignored warnings to stop and displayed a gun. The incident was captured by dash cam video, but community leaders want to see the evidence.
Schenectady NAACP President Ted Ward said, "[We're] asking to see the video that the police department said they have video of this incident."
Ward presided over Rivera's funeral. He says there are witness accounts that contradict the Police version of events. And with 14 bullets fired at Rivera, he questions the amount of force used.
"I think in this case there should be possibly a police apology," said Ward.
Ward says the NAACP wants to see a special prosecutor called in to handle the investigation. While the three officers involved have been placed on administrative leave, Schenectady police didn't return call for comment. Rivera's family said they're planning to push for more answers the days to come. But for now, they're focused is mourning their loss.