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Gray Funeral Shows Human Side of Stop and Frisk

Kimani Gray Funeral Highlights Human Cost of Stop and Frisk

On Saturday, inside the mahogany wood and white stone sanctuary at St. Catherine of Genoa Catholic Church, no one spoke openly about the New York Police Department’s impact on the church's East Flatbush neighborhood in Brooklyn.

No one mentioned the controversial tactic, formally called "stop-question-and-frisk," and its possible impact on police community relations in the neighborhood.

No one talked about what it has done to alter the lives of the nearly 5 million people — the overwhelming majority of whom are Black or Latino — citywide who have been stopped and frisked.

No one had to.

At the church’s altar Kimani Gray, a 16-year-old known by the nickname "Kiki" whose favorite subject in school was English because he, “loved the power of words,” lay silent and still inside a coffin, beneath a bone and gold embroidered pall.

To the right of the casket, sat Gray’s parents, family and friends, as well as the emergency medical crew called when Gray’s mother fainted and nearly fell to the church floor. Later, one of Gray’s brothers had to be restrained inside the sanctuary when he said loudly that an unidentified man should not have been there because the man did not know who Kiki was.

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