PAWTUCKET, R.I. (WPRI) — The family of a man killed by a Pawtucket police officer last month held a peaceful demonstration Saturday.
The family of 24-year-old Dominique Silva said they were just trying to get answers from the city about what happened the night he was shot and killed by Officer Julianne Borsari.
“Our goal here today is seeking for justice actually for Dominique Silva in a peaceful – and we’re looking for answered and justice actually,” said Ze Desousa, Silva’s uncle.
Desousa and silva’s aunt, Joquebede Sanca, said no public officials reached out to the family after his death.
“No one, no one. Neither the police nor the mayor, no one went – and not even a phone call,” Sance explained.
They said the lack of information from the city is deepening their grief.
“We don’t matter – we don’t matter,” Sanca added. “It seems like Dominique wasn’t a human being.”
According to Pawtucket police, Silva used a gun to steal drugs on March 24 when Officer Borsari confronted him. They said he pointed a handgun at her and gave chase. Police said he pointed the gun at Borsari again – prompting her to fire her service weapon, fatally wounding him.
“When someone is scared, they usually run away, right? I think that’s what Dominique was trying to do,” Desousa said.
Police said it was later discovered that Silva’s gun was a replica.
“We’re not against the police – all the police – because we know there’s a lot of police who do excellent work and they’re here to protect us,” Sanca said. “But we just want them to answer our questions.”
Pawtucket Mayor Donald Grebien told Eyewitness News Saturday there was confusion over who the family’s liaison was. He said his officer thought they had been in contact with the family through that person, but now they realize that was incorrect.
Grebien said he will be calling Silva’s family directly this week to apologize and offer his condolences.
Meanwhile, the Rhode Island State Police and Pawtucket Police Department have turned over the investigation into the shooting to the Office of the Attorney General for presentation to the Grand Jury.