Credit Union of Atlanta CEO DeFarra Gaymon was shot and killed by a police officer in Newark, N.J., last week after allegedly propositioning the officer at a gay cruising area.
Gaymon stopped by the Branch Brook Park area while en route to his 30th high school reunion. The neighborhood is known for attracting sexual activity and male prostitutes, according to a report in The New York Times.
According to Essex County prosecutor Robert D. Laurino, the 29-year-old officer, whose name hasn't been released, claims he fired in self-defense. He says when he attempted to arrest Gaymon for lewd behavior, he ran and, when cornered, tried to disarm the officer. The officer shot Gaymon once. He died three hours later at nearby University Hospital.
The chairs of Garden State Equality and the Gender Rights Advocacy Association of New Jersey sent a letter to Laurino and Essex County sheriff Armando B. Fontoura demanding an investigation into the killing. The letter asks if the incident was part of a sting operation in Branch Brook Park and requests a meeting to further discuss the killing.
"In no way do we condone any violation of lewdness statutes," the letter reads. "But any sting operation targeting gay men or LGBT people specifically, or anyone perceived as such, is unconscionable -- and as we strongly believe, illegal."