The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) is deeply disappointed with the New York City Police Department’s (NYPD) unwillingness to terminate Richard Haste, the officer involved in the killing of Ramarley Graham, an 18-year-old unarmed youth of Jamaican descent. In 2012, Officer Haste fatally shot Mr. Graham in front of his grandmother and 6-year-old brother. Haste was found guilty of wrongdoing in an NYPD disciplinary proceeding; however, instead of being terminated as recommended by the disciplinary trial commissioner, the NYPD has allowed Haste to resign.

LDF’s President and Director-Counsel, Sherrilyn Ifill, issued the following statement:

“Five years after the police-involved shooting death of Ramarley Graham, the New York City Police Department’s Trial Commissioner, who presided over the disciplinary hearing of Officer Richard Haste, came to the same conclusion as Mr. Graham’s family and his supporters – that Officer Haste should be dismissed from the police department for using poor tactical judgment that led to Mr. Graham’s death. However, the NYPD inexplicably rejected the Trial Commissioner’s recommendation by allowing Officer Haste to resign and cleared the path for him to find work at another police department.”

“We share the Graham family’s palpable disappointment with the NYPD’s unwillingness to fire Richard Haste. The life of a young man has been cut short at the hands of police, and not a single officer has been held accountable. We therefore urge NYPD officials to pursue disciplinary action against the other officers involved in Mr. Graham’s death, including Sergeant Scott Morris and Officer John McLoughlin.”


Founded in 1940, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) is the nation’s first civil and human rights law organization and has been completely separate from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) since 1957—although LDF was originally founded by the NAACP and shares its commitment to equal rights. LDF’s Thurgood Marshall Institute is a multi-disciplinary and collaborative hub within LDF that launches targeted campaigns and undertakes innovative research to shape the civil rights narrative. In media attributions, please refer to us as the NAACP Legal Defense Fund or LDF.