SPRING VALLEY, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – The family of a mentally ill Spring Valley man who was shot and killed during a struggle with police earlier this month are speaking out.
Herve Gilles, 37, was shot in the head by officers around 3 a.m. on Dec. 14 outside the El Buen Gusto bar and restaurant. Police said he was armed and combative.
1010 WINS’ Glenn Schuck reports
Rockland County district attorney Thomas Zugibe said in mid-January a grand jury will review the police officers’ actions in the shooting death of the Haitian immigrant.
The victim’s sister, Marie Elias, is demanding justice and wants an investigation to determine whether police officers used excessive force and whether they were justified in shooting Gilles in the head.
“He was a very happy person,” Elias said. “Although he was mentally ill, anybody who knows Herve would tell you he’s always happy and making people laugh. That’s what he’s known for, making people laugh. The last time he was at the house we were all laughing, having a good time.”
Elias admits seeing reports that Gilles bit and possibly hit officers with a stick. She is asking why the officers involved had to kill her brother.
Zugibe met with the family on Thursday and promised a fair and complete investigation into the incident.