On April 17th, 37-year-old Edson Thevenin was fatally shot by a police officer in Troy, New York. He was driving at about 3:15 a.m. when the officer, Sergeant Randall French, attempted to pull him over, according to local authorities. Thevenin allegedly fled in his car, and when police caught up with him, they say he drove into French, who'd gotten out of his vehicle. Pinned between the police car and Thevenin's car, French is said to have fired eight shots at Thevenin through the windshield. Thevenin died, and French sustained minor leg injuries.

By Friday, April 22—just five days after the shooting—Rensselaer County District Attorney Joel Abelove had already convened a grand jury, which declined to indict French, having determined that the officer's "use of deadly physical force was justifiable under the law."

But it seems that Abelove may have overstepped his authority in convening a grand jury so quickly. Last July, Governor Cuomo appointed Attorney General Eric Schneiderman to serve as a special prosecutor on police-killing deaths. For months, relatives of New Yorkers killed by police officers had been asking for this, after a grand jury declined to indict NYPD officer Daniel Pantaleo for fatally choking Eric Garner. Some suspected that the grand jury was simply acting according to the Staten Island District Attorney office's wishes.

Schneiderman's office sent representatives to the scene on the day of Thevenin's death and told Abelove that they were looking into whether or not the shooting should fall under the AG's jurisdiction. Now, Schneiderman is suing Abelove, saying that he violated Cuomo's executive order by convening that grand jury.

Per Cuomo's order, if there is "significant question as to whether the civilian was armed and dangerous at the time of his or her death," Schneiderman can investigate and prosecute the case. Last Tuesday, his Special Investigations and Prosecutions Unit requested the investigative files from the shooting that killed Thevenin, and told Abelove that they were trying to determine whether Schneiderman should have jurisdiction over the case. But Abelove told reporters quite the opposite, saying that "it was relayed to me by [assistant attorney general Paul] Clyne that the attorney general ... is not going to be claiming jurisdiction in this case." He later told Schneiderman's office that he'd been misquoted, though according to the Albany Times Union, his remarks were recorded.

According to the lawsuit, Schneiderman's office told Abelove "at least three times" that he was interested in the case. It also notes that Cuomo's order "expressly and unequivocally required District Attorneys to get prior authorization from the Attorney General to make grand jury presentations where a civilian was 'unarmed' or where there is a significant question whether a civilian was 'armed and dangerous.'"

"District Attorney Abelove's actions not only violate the law, but directly undermine the public's confidence in law enforcement, making the jobs of police officers and district attorneys throughout the state more difficult," Schneiderman said.

Abelove's office declined to comment.

Since Schneiderman was appointed special prosecutor last July, his office has investigated four cases involving civilians who were not armed or dangerous, including the shooting death of Miguel Espinal in Westchester and the cell death of Raynette Turner in Mount Vernon. The latter case is closed, with the AG ruling that there was no criminal culpability in Turner's death, but he is still investigating Espinal's death, as well as a case in Putnam County and a case in the Bronx, according to the New York Times.

According to Schneiderman's office, this is the first time that a DA has violated Cuomo's order by attempting to exercise jurisdiction over a case that could fall under the special prosecutor's authority. It's also the first time that Schneiderman is suing to compel a DA to comply with the executive order.

It's worth noting that the AG has not yet decided whether he will investigate and prosecute Thevenin's death—rather, he's challenging the fact that the DA convened a grand jury before Schneiderman could determine whether or not Thevenin was armed and dangerous when French shot and killed him.

Thevenin is survived by his wife, Cinthia, and two children, ages four and eight. His family has said they would like the Attorney General to investigate his death, as they don't think that the Troy police have been consistent in their statements.