Correction to This Article
This article said a District man died during a confrontation with police at a funeral in Southeast Washington. The confrontation occurred several blocks from the site of the funeral.

D.C.'s Trinidad Neighborhood Seethes After Police Shooting

By Clarence Williams and Theola Labbé-DeBose
Washington Post Staff Writers
Wednesday, June 10, 2009

About 100 people flocked to a church in Northeast Washington last night to ask why U.S. Park Police had fatally shot a 25-year-old man in the Trinidad neighborhood. But many in the crowd seemed to leave with even more questions and a greater sense of frustration.

Maj. Jeanne O'Toole of the Park Police referred many questions about Monday night's shooting of Trey Joyner to D.C. police, who are investigating the case.

D.C. police officials also declined to answer many questions at the meeting, citing the ongoing probe, and they would not address the belief held by many residents that Joyner was shot in the back as he fled the police.

"It's not taken lightly, that we take a life as a police agency," O'Toole told the crowd. "There's not a lot about the shooting that I can speak on."

O'Toole said an interagency police task force was acting on a tip that Joyner had a weapon and that officers later found one when they followed him into an alley. Witnesses gave a different account yesterday, saying that Joyner pulled his car over in the 1200 block of Holbrook Street NE and ran into an alley. They said federal officers gave chase and briefly restrained Joyner before he broke free and ran again. According to witnesses, police then shot him in the back.

Lt. Paul Wingate of the D.C. police homicide unit apologized to residents last night for not being able to give details of the incident.

"There's things we can't divulge right now, even if we wanted to," he said. "You're just going to have to bear with us on this."

Most in the crowd at Holy Name Church, on 11th Street NE, were not satisfied with that answer.

"If you can't give out any information, what's the purpose of us being here?" asked Antoinette McNeely, 50.

D'Angelo Alford, 24, said he went to elementary school with Joyner. "Why was he shot in the back, and he was running away from police?" Alford asked.

Yusef Hampton stayed at the meeting less than five minutes and then left after repeatedly hearing police decline to answer questions.

"How long do you think the strong black brothers are going to take this?" he said. As he walked out, Alford told others, "They're faking in there."

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