Democrat and Chronicle – March 11, 2006

A dozen or so protesters marched on the Public Safety Building in downtown Rochester on Friday, appealing for answers about why police fatally shot a mentally distraught woman in her home last week.

Community activist Joy Powell-Weh led the march from the Hall of Justice to the Public Safety Building. With her were family members of the slain woman, Particia Thompson, whom police said charged officers with a knife when they responded to a 911 call at her house at 199 Weldon St.

Family members now say police planted the knife and forced Thompson’s husband, Nathaniel Thompson, to sign a statement although they said he cannot read.

One issue protestors want answered: Why a team of officers specially trained to deal with mentally distraught people was not dispatched to the call.

Protestors asked for a meeting with acting Police Chief Timothy Hickey. An official said Hickey was out of town. Police videotaped the protestors, who then dispersed.