ITHACA, N.Y. — Jamel A. Booker, 29, who was convicted of shooting an Ithaca police officer in 2012, has died while serving his prison sentence in Ulster County, New York.
After a trial in 2013, Booker was found guilty of several charges related to shooting Ithaca Police Officer Anthony Augustine. According to the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision, he was serving a sentence of 23 to 27 years at the maximum-security Shawangunk Correctional Facility in Ulster County, New York.
According to the department of corrections, Booker was pronounced dead at about 9:40 p.m. March 5 at St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital in Newburgh, New York, after “receiving emergency medical attention.”
In a statement Monday, March 11, the department of corrections said, “The official cause of death will be determined and released by the Ulster County Medical Examiner’s Office pursuant to County Law §671 and §674, which state coroners and medical examiners determine the cause of death. County Law §677 leaves it to coroners and medical examiners to determine if results will be released and to whom. Given the ongoing investigation into the death, the Department has no further comment at this time.”
Reached by phone Monday, the medical examiner’s office in Ulster County said they do not release information on the cause of death except to family.
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Booker was serving his prison sentence after being convicted of aggravated assault on a peace officer, first-degree assault, fourth-degree criminal possession of stolen property and second-degree criminal possession of a weapon. According to previous reports, in October 2012, police officers said they tried to pull over Booker. After a police pursuit, Booker stopped the vehicle and ran into nearby woods, with two IPD officers in pursuit on foot. They said they ordered him on the ground while pointing a taser at him, at which point Booker pulled out a handgun and shot Officer Augustine. Augustine was shot in an area not covered by his bulletproof vest. Though he survived, he was unable to return to his job as a police officer.
According to a 2015 article in The Ithaca Voice, former chief of staff Kevin Sutherland said, “There were issues with him being able to carry out the duties of his job. … He really wanted to come back, but there were health-related issues that would put himself — and, potentially, other officers — at risk.”
Booker began serving his sentence in July 2013 and was not eligible for parole until 2035.