A gunshot or an airbag in Officer Involved Shooting?

"Mistaking a 2 ft pillow for a gunshot makes no sense"


Buffalo, N.Y. (WBEN) The attorney for the family of the suspect in the officer-involved shooting is refuting some of the latest theories in Sunday's incident.

Nelson Torre, representing the family of suspect Jose Hernandez-Rossy was asked about reports that Officer Joseph Acquino's ear may have been ripped off by an air bag and not a gunshot.  "The chances of him mistaking a two foot wide white pillow that blows up in his face for a gunshot are non-existent. It makes no sense," said Torre. 

He also said the officer's injury is inconsistent with the crash. "A man hanging half out of a car moving at that velocity," Torre said "his lower body and legs would have been propelled forward with his upper torso in the car. The injuries would have been to his lower back and spine."

WBEN asked attorney Paul Cambria if a police officier could mistake the sound of an airbag being deployed for a gunshot?  Absolutely, Cambria answered.  He said it all comes down to justification for officer Justin Tedesco."Did he have a reasonable basis to believe that physical injury had just occurred to his partner, and if so, New York State law allows deadly force to prevent an escape."

Torre continues to cast doubt on the story as more evidence surfaces.

"They didn't think there was any gunshot in that car when it hit the brick wall," Torre said. "He was run off the road, they went to the car, pulled him out, and started to physically lay their hands upon him."

Torre said he had reason to believe that was the case.

"This is not an isolated incident," Torre said. "These officers had a history with Jose. There's a documented history there, where they had each stopped him and issued multiple charges on various occasions, charges which were dismissed I might add."

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