Bridgeport Police Chief AJ Perez identified the officer who fired his gun during Tuesday’s shooting that killed a teenager as James Boulay.
“My heart and my soul goes out to that family,” Perez said. “That should never have happened, that’s a tragedy in our city.”
Two days after the shooting on Fairfield Avenue, Amani Young still can’t believe his friend 15-year-old Jayson Negron is gone.
Boulay is on paid adminsitrative leave pending the outcome of an investigation into the incident.
“About a week ago, that’s the last time we was in the studio,” Young said at Negron’s memorial.
Young said he was Negron’s music manager and that they spent a lot of time together in the recording studio.
“He has a lot of unreleased music and videos that hasn’t been put out yet,” Young said, “We are going to show you that this kid was a different kid, this right here that they got him portrayed as man that’s not him bro, not him at all.”
Boulay had no previous record of discipline, Perez told NBC Connecticut.
“He’s a good officer,” Perez said. “He’s been here for a little over a year now.”
While state police and a state’s attorney in Waterbury will make the ultimate determination whether Boulay’s use of force was justified, Perez said based on preliminary information the officer acted in accordance with the law and department procedures.
“What happened is he was holding on to the door like this and when the vehicle went forward and backwards he got caught underneath and he thought he was going to get run over,” Perez said. “So he pulled his gun and shot him.”
Boulay also shot 21-year-old Julian Fyffe, the passenger in the car police said was stolen and had turned the wrong way on Fairfield Avenue before hitting other cars.
“The car becomes a three thousand pound weapon,” Perez said. “You know he gets pinned and goes underneath that vehicle, anything could happen.
The Greater Bridgeport NAACP chapter held a press conference Thursday afternoon outside Bridgeport’s Government Center to discuss how the community should move forward after this shooting.
The chapter’s president George Mintz said community groups will be discussing, “how can we prevent this from ever happening again?”
Mintz said he is disturbed the boy’s body was left in the street for hours after the shooting.
“We hope to be able to have discussions on how we can effect change and introduce legislation so that no other family will have to have that experience again,” Mintz said.
The superintendent of Bridgeport Public School said Negron was a freshman at Fairchild-Wheeler Magnet School. Counselors were sent there and to other high schools to help students who knew Negron cope with his death.
Perez announced there will be an internal affairs investigation into the police shooting. He is also asking the department’s Firearm Review Board to analyze the incident and make recommendations.
Perez told NBC Connecticut he is unaware if video exists of the events leading up to and including the shooting.
“I can tell you that we do not have dash cams on our vehicles,” Perez said.
The chief supports outfitting officers with body cameras, but he said right now the funding isn’t there to cover the costs of storing all the video.