Relatives of man killed by police 'want justice'

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wwltv.com

Posted on March 8, 2012 at 10:56 PM

Updated Thursday, Mar 8 at 11:26 PM

Tania Dall / Eyewitness News
Email: tdall@wwltv.com | Twitter: @taniadall

NEW ORLEANS -- While investigators continue to look into the officer-involved shooting in Gentilly on Wednesday night, Wendell Allen's family is trying to understand what went wrong.

Relatives met privately with Mayor Mitch Landrieu at City Hall and NOPD Superintendent Ronal Serpas on Thursday. Family and friends of Wendell's showed up to NOPD Police Headquarters on a mission.

"We just want some kind of justice, some kind of closure, what was the reason for them doing what they did to them," said Crystal Butler, who identified herself as Wendell's aunt.

The 20-year-old's mother was escorted into the building and then seen in an exclusive Eyewitness News video walking into Serpas' office.

"I'm hurtin'. I'm hurtin'. That's how I feel," said Natasha Allen after her meeting with Serpas.

The Gentilly mother was angry by a process that gives the officer who shot and killed her son 72 hours before having to be questioned by investigators. NOPD says that the procedure is standard protocol.

"His police title, that's just a title. He's still a man just like the next man that commits a murder. So my child's crime should be treated the same if he'd gotten killed by a regular man," said Natasha Allen.

On the second floor of a home in the 2600 block of Prentiss, police say Wendell Allen was shot and killed by Officer Josh Colclough. Gunfire erupting after police issued a search warrant at the address that had been under police surveillance for weeks.

"All the children said that when they came in and they heard the boom, they put guns in the children's faces and asked them to back up. They proceeded upstairs and all they heard was a pow and Wendell screaming," said Butler. NOPD confirms that 5 children were inside the Gentilly home when the search warrant was executed ranging from ages 1 to 14-years-old.

While police say a Bersa .380 cal semi-automatic hand gun, digital scales, packaging materials, and 138 grams of marijuana were found inside the house --- Natasha Allen says nothing was found during an initial search on Wednesday night. She said the family was kept away for nearly 24-hours and was only allowed to return late Thursday afternoon.

"I figured they were going to say that, but last night they didn't have no drugs. Last night they didn't have no gun," said Natasha Allen.

Wendell's relatives say the college-bound basketball player was unarmed at the time of the shooting, which NOPD also confirms.

Relatives say he was dressed only in jogging pants when he died in an upstairs hallway.

It's a deadly shooting that this mother says she'll have to pray to understand.

"I'm leaving everything in God's hands," said Natasha Wendell.

Police say two people were arrested after Wednesday's deadly shooting in Gentilly: 20-year-old Davin Allen and 19-year-old Brandon Boles. Both men were booked with possession with intent to distribute marijuana.

Sources tell Eyewitness News that Wendell Allen was not named or the target of Wednesday's search warrant that was issued.

 

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