Family Of Harlem’s Mohamed Bah Killed By Police To Receive $1.9M

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The family of Mohamed Bah, a Harlem man who was shot to death by police in 2012, will receive $1.9 million in a settlement of their civil lawsuit against the City of New York and the NYPD, a city Law Department spokesman confirmed.

Mohamed Bah was fatally shot by police in his West 124th Street apartment on Sept. 25, 2012 after his mother asked police to perform a wellness check on her son. Hawa Bah said Thursday that she is “relieved” that her family can finally “move on from the civil suit,” but added that she continues “to feel immense pain and disbelief that the Mayor put us through so much suffering.”

The jury ruled that Mateo used excessive force in Bah’s death and that Licitra failed to properly supervise the situation, lawyers said. Bah’s family was awarded $2.21 million in the federal civil lawsuit, lawyers said.

In November 2017, A federal jury in Manhattan voted to hold NYPD Emergency Services Unit officer Edwin Mateo and lieutenant Michael Licitra liable for the 2012 death of Mohamed Bah, lawyers representing Bah’s family told Patch. The jury ruled that Mateo used excessive force in Bah’s death and that Licitra failed to properly supervise the situation, lawyers said. Bah’s family was awarded $2.21 million in the federal civil lawsuit, lawyers said.

The city then appealed that verdict, dragging the legal process out until Wednesday’s settlement. A city Law Department spokesman said in a statement Thursday that the city still believes officers Mateo and Licitra “acted reasonably.”

“While we believe the officer acted reasonably under these difficult circumstances, we hope this settlement will bring a measure of closure to the family.”

“While we believe the officer acted reasonably under these difficult circumstances, we hope this settlement will bring a measure of closure to the family.” Law Department spokesman Nick Paolucci said in a statement.

Hawa Bah said Thursday that it’s “outrageous” that the NYPD did not fire the officers involved in her son’s death. Bah also proposed that the NYPD should not be the agency tasked with responding to situations involving emotionally distressed people.

“In Mohamed’s name, I am fighting for the NYPD to be eliminated as first responders to people in emotional crisis, like my son was. I do not want any other mother or family to have to face the suffering I have had to endure. I want future generations to benefit from Mohamed’s legacy,”

“In Mohamed’s name, I am fighting for the NYPD to be eliminated as first responders to people in emotional crisis, like my son was. I do not want any other mother or family to have to face the suffering I have had to endure. I want future generations to benefit from Mohamed’s legacy,” Bah said in a statement.

The NYPD officers were never charged for the 2012 killing of Bah, who suffered from mental illness. The U.S. Attorney’s office announced that the officers would not face charges after an independent investigation into Bah’s death failed to produce sufficient evidence for federal charges. The U.S. Attorney’s office began its investigation in 2015.

Bah was shot in West 124th Street and Morningside Avenue apartment on Sept. 25, 2012 after police responded to a welfare call made by Bah’s mother, the New York Times reported in 2012

“She expresses a concern that her son, who is in this apartment, is going to hurt himself or somebody else,” NYPD spokesman Paul J. Browne told the Times in 2012.

A standoff ensued when patrol officers arrived at the apartment and were greeted by Bah, who was standing naked and holding a knife, the Times reported. The NYPD Emergency Service Unit were called to the scene and tried to convince Bah, who had put clothes on, to drop the knife. Bah was shot in the arm, chest, abdomen and head, the Times reported in 2012.

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