What’s On The Tape? DJ Henry’s Family Still Doesn’t Know

By Phillip Martin

Dec. 23, 2011

DJ Henry family

DJ Henry's family has hoped that surveillance footage will clarify the events on the night of the young man's death. (Jess Bidgood/WGBH)

BOSTON — As with any story, there are at least two versions of the October 2010 death of Danroy “DJ” Henry. One is that the young Pace University student from Easton, Mass., was shot and killed by police officer Aaron Hess, who jumped on the hood of the car and started firing wildly through the windshield. The other version — that of the police — is that Henry tried to run Hess over with his automobile, leaving the officer with no other option but to jump on to the hood of the car.

A grand jury cleared Officer Hess and a fellow officer of any wrongdoing. However, that has failed to squelch the passions stirred up by this case. It has long been the contention of multiple witnesses and the family of the victim that these interpretations of what happened could be resolved if video of the incident was made public.

Read the WGBH News investigative series on the death of DJ Henry.

Since the shooting, the Henry family and their attorney have requested to see the outdoor videotapes from a bank and other businesses in the mall where the shooting took place. But the DA’s office, which confiscated all relevant video in the mall after the incident, has declined to make those surveillance tapes public. 
However, during the week of Dec. 19, according to the Henry family, the DA’s office offered to show the family the tapes or selections from the tapes — if they would agree not to make the content public.
The family declined this stipulation, so what is on those tapes remains a mystery. 
The case is still being litigated, with the family seeking more than $100 million and an apology from the Westchester Country DA’s office, Officer Hess and county police forces.

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