Watch CBS News

Family of man fatally shot by NYPD officers speaks out after release of body cam video. They say they want justice.

Family of man killed by NYPD officers speaks out after release of body cam video
Family of man killed by NYPD officers speaks out after release of body cam video 02:33

NEW YORK -- The family of 19-year-old Win Rozario spoke publicly Wednesday for the first time since police body camera footage was released showing officers fatally shoot Rozario in front of his mother and brother.

Rozario had called 911 himself to say he was experiencing a mental health crisis. When officers arrived, video shows Rozario ran at them while holding a pair of scissors. The two officers used their Tasers on him multiple times, but eventually shot and killed him.

Rozario's family is calling for the officers to be fired.

Win Rozario's grieving family calls for justice

Days after New York City Police Department body camera footage was released showing the shooting death of Rozario by officers inside his Queens home, his grieving family called for action on the steps of City Hall.

Rozario's mother, Notan Eva Costa, spoke through a translator. She was in tears while surrounded by community leaders and City Council members.

"I'm still grieving, but I'm here because I want justice for my son," she said. "I begged the police not to shoot, but the police still killed him ... He told us he wanted to join the military because he wanted to do something for this country."

Rozario's younger brother, Utsho Rozario, says Win was his role model who cooked for the family and loved to play basketball.

"These past 22 days has been hell for us," Utsho Rozario said. "In the morning, he would usually wake up before me, and when I woke up, he used to give me a big hug."

"We see disproportionately that Black and Brown families, working class families, are impacted by these incidents," said Simran Thind, with the nonprofit Desis Rising Up and Moving (DRUM).

"When our families, friends, neighbors are experiencing a mental health crisis, they deserve a response from mental health professionals, not being killed by the NYPD. It's time for a change," said Donna Lieberman, director of the New York Civil Liberties Union.

NYPD body camera footage shows Win Rozario's shooting death

Body camera footage released last week shows Rozario and his mother in their kitchen on March 27. Rozario takes out scissors and charges towards officers Matthew Cianfrocco and Salvatore Alongi before they use a Taser on him.

His mother takes the scissors away and puts them down as she pleads with the officers to not shoot. They use the Taser on Rozario again, but he continues to move towards the officers with the scissors. One shot was fired, and eventually four more.

Rozario's family says officers could have safely detained him.

The NYPD maintains it was a chaotic situation and they were forced to fire. They referred CBS New York to a previously released statement that reads in part, "The NYPD is fully cooperating with the state attorney general's investigation into this tragic incident, and is committed to ensuring a full and thorough review. The NYPD force investigation division is also conducting an investigation."

The NYPD says both police officers remain on modified assignment, meaning they are not allowed to carry a badge or gun. The family says that's not enough; they want both officers suspended without pay.

CBS New York reached out to the city about their B-HEARD program, where social workers respond to mental health calls, and is waiting to learn more as to why they did not respond to this particular call for help.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.