QUEENS — Family and friends of Noel Polanco, the National Guardsman tragically killed by a police officer during a traffic stop last week, are expected to gather Friday morning for the young man's funeral.
Ahead of that, a wake for the 22-year-old will be held at the Leo. F. Kearns Funeral Home at 61-40 Woodhaven Blvd. in Rego Park on Wednesday and Thursday night from 6 to 10 p.m., a representative from the funeral home said.
On Friday, there will be a funeral service at Eternal Love Baptist church at 54-07 99th St.
Polanco, who was pulled over on the Grand Central Parkway around 5:15 a.m. last Thursday, was shot and killed by Det. Hassan Hamdy, a member of the NYPD's elite Emergency Services Unit.
Police say Polanco was driving erratically and cutting between cars, before being pulled over by the ESU's Apprehension Team, which was returning from serving a warrant in a Bronx apartment building.
As Hamdy approached the vehicle from the passenger side yelling 'Put your hands up!,' sources say he saw Polanco reach down to grab an object, prompting him to fire a shot.
But witnesses in the car claim Polanco had his hands on the steering wheel at the time of the shooting. No gun was found in the car, but police say they found a yellow power drill.
“He always wanted to become a cop and to find out that his life was taken by a police officer… They have to know how to do their job," Polanco's mother Cecilia Reyes said after the shooting.
Family and supporters gathered at a press conference on Saturday in support of Polanco's family, including Rev. Al Sharpton and family members of other victims of police-involved shootings.
"We see no reason not to prosecute," Sharpton said at the press conference. "We're calling for an immediate and full investigation."
Hamdy has since been placed on modified duty, and the shooting is being investigated by the NYPD's internal affairs bureau and the Queens District Attorney's office.