By Colleen Long
NEW YORK (AP) — A judge in New York City sentenced former NYPD officer Peter Liang to five years’ probation and 800 hours of community service on April 19.
Liang was convicted of manslaughter and official misconduct in the 2014 fatal shooting of Akai Gurley.
Justice Danny Chun also reduced the manslaughter conviction to criminally negligent homicide. Prosecutors say they will appeal that decision.
Liang was fired from the police force shortly after the February jury verdict in the death of Gurley. The 28-year-old rookie officer was patrolling the inside of a public housing project when he opened the stairwell door and fired once.
Gurley, also 28, was walking down to the lobby and was struck by the bullet that had ricocheted.
Liang testified in his own defense that he was terrified and never meant to shoot anyone. After the trial, he met privately with Gurley’s domestic partner and apologized to her. Both he and his partner said they felt unqualified to help aid Gurley as he lay bleeding on the stairwell floor. Gurley’s girlfriend gave him CPR as a neighbor yelled instructions from a 911 operator on the telephone.
Ruth Bayang contributed to this report.