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The four were part of the now-defunct Street Crimes Unit.
All four officers were charged with second-degree murder and acquitted at trial in Albany, New York.
The shooting of Amadou Diallo occurred on February 4, 1999, when Amadou Diallo, a 23-year-old immigrant from Guinea, was shot and killed by four New York City Police Department plain-clothed officers—Sean Carroll, Richard Murphy, Edward Mc Mellon and Kenneth Boss—after they mistook him for a rape suspect from one year earlier.
In September 1996, he came to New York City where other family members had immigrated. He had reportedly come to New York City to study but had not enrolled in any school. Watters, he sought to remain in the United States by filing an application for political asylum under false pretenses, saying that he was from Mauritania and that his parents had been killed in fighting to buttress his claim that he had credible fear of going back to his country.
Such studies find that participants made slower and less accurate decisions on whether to shoot an unarmed black target than an unarmed white target, and were quicker and more likely to correctly decide to shoot an armed black target than an armed white target.
The authors of one study wrote that the shooting studies "provide powerful evidence that racial stereotypes create associations and expectations that play a role in the sort of split-second decisions that may literally be a matter of life or death." However, no correlations have been found between participants' indicated levels of racial bias, and their performance in the games.
In April 2002, as a result of the killing of Diallo and other controversial actions, the Street Crime Unit was disbanded.
In 2003, Diallo's mother, Kadiatou Diallo, published a memoir, My Heart Will Cross This Ocean: My Story, My Son, Amadou (ISBN 0-345-45600-9), with the help of author Craig Wolff.