Man Dies After NYPD Officer 'Threw a Picnic Cooler' at Him Before Crash: Attorney General

Police say he was "attempting to flee," while the man's mother claims he was "just on the motorcycle talking to me on the video chat" when the call suddenly "cut out."

A 30-year-old man who authorities claim was “attempting to flee” from police on a motorcycle has died, after a sergeant reportedly threw a picnic cooler at him during an incident this week in New York City.

The New York Attorney General’s Office of Special Investigations confirmed Thursday they opened an investigation into the death of Eric Duprey, an apparent delivery driver and father of three who lived in the Bronx.

According to the AG’s release, “an NYPD officer threw a picnic cooler at Mr. Duprey, who was riding a motorbike. The cooler hit Mr. Duprey and caused him to fall on the ground. Mr. Duprey was pronounced dead at the scene.”

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The moment was caught on surveillance footage (via CBS NY), in which a man on a motorcycle can be seen riding down the sidewalk, before another person — who does not appear to be in uniform — throws a large object at him. The man on the bike then loses control, before appearing to crash into a parked vehicle.

The officer involved has been identified by New York City Police Department as Sergeant Erik Duran, who was suspended from duty without pay on Thursday in relation to what the department is calling a “fatal incident” involving “a man attempting to flee from the police on a motorcycle.”

The NYPD also claimed to the Associated Press that Duprey attempted to make a run from cops on a friend’s bike after he was caught selling drugs to an undercover officer. Duran, they said, was on the sidewalk as part of the Narcotics Unit’s “buy-and-bust” operation.

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Duprey’s mother, however, told the AP that the police’s story was “all lies” — telling the outlet, “He wasn’t fleeing. He wasn’t fleeing. He was just on the motorcycle talking to me on the video chat. And he passed by that place when all of a sudden the call cut out.”

“They left three fatherless babies,” she added, saying her son had children ages 3, 5 and 9. “I’m going to get justice.”

In their statement, the NYPD said the city medical examiner will determine a cause of death, while the AG’s office also leads the investigation into the incident. “The NYPD is committed to ensuring that there will be a full, thorough, and transparent investigation of this incident to determine the facts and to take the appropriate steps forward,” they concluded.

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