Nicholas Heyward Jr. was shot and killed by an NYC police officer on Septemeber 27, 1994 when he was just 13 years old. Nicholas was playing a game with friends in the Gowanus Houses in Brooklyn where he lived with his mother, father, and younger brother. The boys were playing with plastic toy guns which had bright orange-colored tips. While he was playing, NYPD Officer Brian George encountered Nicholas in the stairwell. Nicholas responded to the officer by dropping his toy gun and telling the officer “We’re only playing! We’re only playing!” Officer Brian George then shot Nicholas in the stomach. He was not taken to the closest hospital, but to St. Vincent’s Hospital in Manhattan, where he died eight hours later. Officer George was never indicted due to his explanation that he "feared for his life" when he heard the "clicking" sound in the stairwell. Though that sound was only the sound of children playing, the shooting was ruled a justifiable homicide. Officer George was never tried and remained on the force.