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[VIDEO] White Plains Police Release Chamberlain Taser Footage

Grainy videos show police pleading with Kenneth Chamberlain Sr. to open his door and put down a knife.

Update 5:45 p.m. Friday:

The U.S. Attorney has released a statement in response to the call for its office to review the Chamberlain case:

“Consistent with our Office’s practices in cases of this kind, we will review all of the available evidence with respect to the death of Kenneth Chamberlain, including the evidence collected during the state’s investigation, to determine whether there were any violations of the federal criminal civil rights laws,” said Ellen Davis, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York.

Original story:

White Plains Police released documents Friday, as well as audio and video footage taken the night they fatally shot Kenneth Chamberlain Sr. in his apartment on Nov. 19. This was one day after a grand jury declined to indict any city officer involved in the case.

The three video clips taken from a police Taser gun are very grainy and with unclear audio, but they show police trying to force a poll-like object through to pry Chamberlain’s door open. Police were responding to a Life Station Medical Alert made by Chamberlain’s medical alert device.

The lawyers for the Chamberlain family, who plan on bringing the case to the U.S. District Attorney and U.S. Attorney General, said Life Station Medical Alert canceled the call, but police insisted on forcing their way into Chamberlain’s apartment against his will—causing him to become upset and the confrontation, which lead to his death.

Police said Chamberlain was mentally disturbed and tried to attack police with a knife and cleaver, while lawyers said that Chamberlain was unarmed.

Here’s what we can tell happened from watching the videos:

The 68-year-old former Marine and correctional officer, whose autopsy shows that he was legally drunk at the time, is shown repeatedly telling police that is he fine and does not need medical assistance and to leave him alone.

“We can’t leave without checking on you,” said a police officer in the video.

The officer repeatedly tells Chamberlain that they have to see him, and to “put down the knife.”

Chamberlain repeatedly tells police to leave and “don’t do it” as they try to enter.

“I’m OK, I’m fine,” he tells police.

“Yeah, but I’m not a doctor,” responds the officer.

Chamberlain asks the police why they are there, and they tell him it's because he pressed his medical alert button. The medical alert system operator can be heard in the background talking to Chamberlin who said, “They are standing here with guns on me. They have a shotgun and a 9 mm glock. They are getting ready to kill me.”

“I’m here to help you, but I can’t help you until you put the knife down,” said the police. 

Chamberlain keeps telling police to leave his door alone, and saying, “come on, come,” as they keep trying.

“Open the door,” said police.

“No, I’m not,” said Chamberlain.

“Put down the knife,” said the officer.

“No, I’m not,” responds Chamberlain.

Chamberlain can then be heard saying “Semper Fi,” and “Hoorah” prompting the officer to mimic him with a “Hoorah.”

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Loud banging noises can be heard from police using equipment to get into the apartment.

"I know I'm gonna get hurt," said Chamberlain.

He can then be heard telling someone that police were about to break in.

“They’re breaking through Mr. President,” said Chamberlain. “I’m out numbered and I can’t [muffled speech]…”

Police can be heard assuring Chamberlain that they aren’t going to hurt him. As police force the door open you can hear Chamberlain say “shoot me, come on.”

The video ends just after he is shown shirtless and in shorts, with his left hand appearing to be empty. It isn’t clear whether anything was in his right hand. 

Click on the videos to watch them in their entirety, and check with us later for more on this story.

Click here for all of our coverage on the Chamberlain shooting. 

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Mike May 04, 2012 at 04:39 PM
I saw the video and I think what happened here is discraceful. It is beyond discraceful.
Vanessa May 04, 2012 at 04:59 PM
As a resident of White Plains I am honestly horrified at the lack of justice served in this case.
Joey May 05, 2012 at 05:13 AM
Dina, your bias is creeping out in this article; shall we call it racism? Why don't you discuss the part of the exchange where the same officer who was indicted due to racial profiling and abuse not 2 weeks ago for an unrelated incident in White Plains can be heard calling Mr. Chamberlain an F***** N**** ? How about the fact that they took an hour to remove his door from its hinges? Your omissions here are irresponsible journalism.
Dan Seidel May 05, 2012 at 10:49 AM
I do not know all the facts, I was not there. I teach some law classes. I teach these cases: State v. Robinson 145 ME 77: An illegal arrest is an assault and battery. The person so attempted to be restrained of his liberty has the same right to use force in defending himself as he would in repelling any other assault and battery. Citizens may resist unlawful arrest to the point of taking an aressting oficer's liife if necessary (Plummer v State 136 Ind 306). Each person has the right to resist an unlawful arrest. In such case, the person attemtpting the arrest stands in the position of a wrongdoer and may be resisted by the use of force, as in self defense (State v. Mobley, 240 NC 476). The victim says "go away". The police say their procedures do not allow for that. I say change the procedures and act rationally, reasonably and lawfully. From what I have seen and heard and read, Chamberlain should be alive and should have remained unmolested in his home/castle. If I was a cop, I would much rather face a lawsuit for failure to render help, than one for a killing. Given the facts, whoever made the decision to remove the door and go in should be removed for gross negligence that resulted in an unnecessary death - do not wait for the next similar circumstance to fire the jerk. Nice lawsuit, but someone is dead. "Thug cop culture" must be changed. Just MHO.
Freddie May 06, 2012 at 08:58 PM
This officer was indicted for racial profiling and he is still on the job. I guess he has to have his day in court before they fire him.
Alberta M. Jarane May 14, 2012 at 09:23 PM
These videos support my surprise at the grand jury's decision. Since Mr. Chamberlain was previously known to the police, they also knew his niece lived upstairs and his son was easily reached by cell. (That's not an assumption.) Rather than break down the door to this man's HOME, why not call his relatives to help diffuse the situation? Is there a time limit for how long police take to complete an assignment? How long would it have taken to get Mr. Chamberlain's son there? Even the medical alert company contacted police to confirm the activation of his alarm was an accident. Mr. Chamberlain's niece did come to the scene and begged officers to let her help. They refused. Even Mr. Chamberlain is heard saying he has a heart problem. It's up to the police to diffuse situations like this where the outcome prevents death. Police knew he was emotional, sick, and drunk; the deadliest of combinations. They also knew they were breaking down the door to this man's home. Shoot him in the leg or the foot, but kill him? Mr. Chamberlain may not have had all his faculties, but to kill him was simply wrong. The majority of us would have opened our door. Not opening your door, however, does not make you guilty of a crime. Police officers, including WPPD, have a lot of technology available to them to make more informed decisions. Think about what they know about you if you get pulled over or arrested. Perhaps, in their eyes, Mr. Chamberlain's life was simply not worth the effort.
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Kai Armstrong December 29, 2012 at 08:57 AM
Poor man, somebody should have put him in proper care he obviously isn't fit to be living alone. Thank you for serving our country, you deserved better.
Wade Wilson January 03, 2013 at 12:28 AM
They Should have killed him years ago.

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