East New York

Girlfriend who witnessed boyfriend’s death testifies in cop murder trial

October 25, 2017 By Paul Frangipane Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Zaquanna Albert, girlfriend of Delrawn Small, testifies in Brooklyn Supreme Court in the murder trial of Wayne Isaacs. Eagle photos by Paul Frangipane
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The sobbing girlfriend of a man killed by an off-duty police officer after a traffic dispute took the stand in the officer’s Brooklyn Supreme Court murder trial Wednesday.

Zaquanna Albert broke down in tears seconds after prosecutors first began asking her questions about the night her boyfriend, 37-year-old Delrawn Small, was killed on an East New York street.

“He took off his seatbelt and he got out. I told him not to get out,” Albert said of Small, who then walked across a lane of traffic to the driver window of Wayne Isaacs’ car. “I seen a spark and I seen Delrawn like, hit the car, like, twist off and hit the car and slide down.”

There was a tissue box within arm’s reach of the 37-year-old mother of three for the entire testimony.

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Albert, Small and their children were at a Fourth of July barbecue before they left at approximately 11:45 p.m., around the time Isaacs was getting off his 4 p.m. to midnight shift on July 4, 2016.

After Small had about three rum drinks over the span of roughly seven hours, Albert asked to leave the party to work on her school paper for graduate school.

“We were driving down Atlantic Avenue and then a car cut us off,” the SUNY Polytechnic Institute student said of Isaacs’ Nissan. “We were both like, what the f—k?”

When Small and Isaacs, 38, stopped at a red light on Atlantic and Bradford Street, Small got out of his car and walked over to Isaacs’ driver window as the couple’s 4-month-old and 14-year-old children watched from the car.

Surveillance footage shows a spark seconds after Small gets to Isaacs’ car, leading him to stumble between two cars and bleed to death on the street.

“I was just screaming,” Albert said. “When I seen the blood, I knew he was shot.”

Isaacs then walked over to the body and walked back to his car to call 911, saying he had been assaulted, corroborating the self-defense argument of the defense team.

The officer previously assigned to the 79th Precinct in Bedford-Stuyvesant faces 25 years to life in prison if convicted.

“I seen Wayne Isaacs standing right by his car. I shouted at him, ‘Why did you shoot?’” Albert said as Isaacs was visibly swallowing in court.

Albert told the panel of 15 jurors that Isaacs looked like he “didn’t give a f—k” after he killed Small.

Isaacs told police that night that Small punched him through his car window before he shot the man in the arm, chest and abdomen.

Defense attorney Stephen Worth got Albert to admit she told detectives the night of the incident that Small gets “so angry so fast.” She denied saying it until Worth played her an audio recording.

Isaacs is the first police officer prosecuted by the Attorney General’s Office after a 2015 executive order by Gov. Andrew Cuomo gave cases of police officers killing unarmed civilians to the AG’s Office.

Isaacs has since been suspended from the force without pay, according to an NYPD spokesperson.

The packed courtroom has been divided with police officers and the defendant’s family on the far right and the victim’s family and friends on the far left.

Albert previously filed a federal claim blaming the NYPD for allowing off-duty officers to carry firearms. Small’s widow, with whom he is estranged, filed a wrongful death suit to be held from court until criminal proceedings are completed.

Isaacs is currently out on $500,000 bail.

The trial was scheduled to continue into the afternoon and start again on Thursday. It is expected to end no later than Nov. 17.

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