As the investigation continues into the shooting of Danroy "D.J." Henry, the popular Pace University football player shot by police last year, a police union decided to give the "Officer of the Year" award to the man who gunned him down.

In response to the award, the victim's family lashed out against the Pleasantville Police Benevolent Association, saying it wasn't that much of a surprise.

"I'm glad the world gets to see the arrogance we've been dealing with since Oct. 17, from the district attorney's office all the way to the Police Benevolent Association," said Danroy Henry's mother, Angella Henry, in a statement Tuesday.

The US Department of Justice is still investigating the circumstances surrounding the Oct. 17 fatal shooting of Henry who was killed outside a Thornwood bar. Officers on the scene claim the student drove his car into Police Officer Aaron Hess and another officer, prompting Hess to open fire.

Friends of Danroy Henry gave a different account, however. Henry's friend Desmond Hinds told PIX 11 News:

"I remember everything. I was in the backseat of the car, we were in the fire lane, officer came up on the left and banged on DJ's door, he indicated us to move, DJ followed instruction. He pulled off at a nice normal speed, not speeding; as he turned I remember the officer on the left comes and jumps out in front of the car, next thing I know...I see three holes in the windshield (and) the car came to a sudden stop. I saw the bullet holes in the windshield, then i heard DJ yell 'they shot me! they shot me!"

Four fellow Pace University students were arrested that night after chaos and utter confusion erupted at the scene following the shooting. The students faced numerous criminal charges that were recently dropped as prosecutors ruled the actions taken by the young men was a result of "youthful visceral reactions to the sudden, unexpected shooting of their friend."

A grand jury also decided not to charge Hess or any of the other officers in the shooting.

"What is the criteria for Police Officer of the Year? Killing an unarmed African-American college student?" said attorney Bonita Zelman, who represented four of Henry's friends who were arrested that night.

In defense of their choice for the officer of the year, PBA President Matthew Listwan said, "The PBA's Award is an expression of support for the dignified and professional manner in which Officer Hess has conducted himself throughout this ordeal, and most particularly, the very difficult aftermath of this tragic incident."

To Danroy Henry's family, however, the timing of the award was troubling. "It just seems weird to us that they would honor him while he is still under investigation by the Department of Justice," said Angella Henry.