Family speaks out after 42-year-old man killed in police shooting in Elizabeth

Toni Yates Image
Thursday, August 3, 2023
Family speaks out after man killed in NJ police shooting
40-year-old Stiven Alegria Hurtado was killed in a deadly police shooting stemming from an alleged dispute at a home in Elizabeth, New Jersey. Toni Yates has the story.

ELIZABETH, New Jersey (WABC) -- Family members are speaking out after a 42-year-old man was shot by police and later died at the hospital following an alleged dispute between him and another woman.

Elizabeth police officers responded to a 911 call Saturday around 8 a.m. for an unwanted person at a home on Amity Street.

Deiby Salcedo says his brother, 42-year-old Estiben Alegria-Hurtado, showed up at their cousin's home drunk.

"When he gets drunk he gets a little crazy," Hurtado's cousin Eduar Riascos said.

The family says Hurtado and his brother's former girlfriend never got along, and that on Saturday he went upstairs, where she lives, and knocked on her door.

"They we're sitting down, his cousin came home a little drunk, knocked on the door, they brought him back inside, once he came inside she came down with a bat," Hurtado's cousin Osman Riascos said.

Family members say the argument escalated after that between the woman, who had a bat, and Hurtado who had a knife.

That's when someone called the police.

Hurtado's family said he did have a knife to his side, but he wasn't threatening anybody.

When officers arrived to the scene, they encountered Hurtado. One officer, identified as Steven Lazo, fired his weapon, according to officials.

The family says the officer fired one round at close range, hitting Hurtado in the chest. He was rushed to University Hospital in Newark, where Salcedo says his brother died Sunday.

"It's too many different ways to stop somebody, you don't have to kill somebody," Salcedo said.

Authorities say a knife was recovered near Hurtado.

The Union County Prosecutors Office took action and sent the case to the Attorney General's Office, who released a statement:

"Attorney General Directive 2019-4 implements a statutory requirement that the Attorney General's Office conduct the investigation of any death that occurs during an encounter with a law enforcement officer acting in the officer's official capacity or while the decedent is in custody, and which establishes clear standards and procedures for conducting such investigations."

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