NYPD officer charged with manslaughter for scooter driver’s cooler-throwing death

A New York City police sergeant was indicted on Tuesday on allegations that he tossed a cooler at a man driving a scooter who crashed and died in August, according to the New York State Attorney General’s office.

Sgt. Erik Duran has been charged with second-degree manslaughter, first- and second-degree assault, and criminally negligent homicide in the death of Eric Duprey. He could face up to 25 years in jail if convicted of the top charge in the indictment.

Duran pled not guilty at his Bronx hearing and posted $150,000 bail. Dozens of police officers appeared in court to support him.

According to Duran’s counsel, Duprey was speeding the motorcycle at 40 mph on a busy sidewalk, endangering bystanders and police officers.

“Sgt. Duran made a split-second decision to prevent serious injury or death to those citizens and officers,” attorney John D’Alessandro stated. “This indictment sends a strong message to the public and every law enforcement officer in the state. In today’s New York, the criminals on the streets.

Duran’s union, the Sergeants’ Benevolent Association, did not immediately return a request for comment.

NYPD officer charged with manslaughter for scooter driver's cooler-throwing death

Duran was conducting an undercover narcotics purchase operation in the Bronx on August 23, when Duprey attempted to flee on his motorcycle.

Surveillance footage shows Duran snatching a plastic cooler from a neighboring table and hurling it at Duprey, knocking him in the head.

Duprey lost control of his vehicle, colliding with a nearby tree and hitting his head on the curb. He was pronounced dead on the scene.

Duran, 37, was suspended without pay shortly after the event and later assigned to modified duty. He has been under investigation by the state attorney general for months and is due back in court on April 18.

Duprey’s wife, Orlyalis Velez, has asked for Duran’s imprisonment.

“This is power abuse,” Velez told NBC New York last year. “There was no need to kill him. He has no firearms. “He has nothing on him.”

“I don’t want [Duran] suspended; I want him in jail,” she remarked at the time. “He’s still home, he still sees his family.”

Jonathan Roberts, an attorney representing the family, stated that they were “happy at least that something is being done.”

“The family is encouraged that this is the first step in holding this officer accountable for the senseless and horrible killing of Eric Duprey, a loving partner, a loving father and a loving son,” Roberts said in a statement.

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