schneidermanAttorney General Eric Schneiderman’s office on Monday announced it would investigate the death of Raynette Turner, a 42-year-old black woman who died on July 27 in a Mount Vernon holding cell.

The investigation is the first Schneiderman’s office is launching since Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued an executive order granting the attorney general special prosecutor status in police-related killings.

The executive order, which has been staunchly opposed by local district attorneys, gives Schneiderman’s office the authority to investigate and prosecute law enforcement-related deaths of civilians.

“My office’s Special Investigations and Prosecutions Unit will investigate the death of Raynette Turner, consistent with Executive Order No. 147 and a conforming order to be issued by the Governor at my request,” Schneiderman said in a statement

Schneiderman’s move to investigate the death of Turner, a mother of 8 children, was awaiting an arraignment on a shoplifting charge, supplants Westchester County District Attorney Jane DiFiore, a former chairwoman of the Joint Commission on Public Ethics.

The executive order issued by Cuomo came after a series of high-profile deaths of unarmed civilians caused by police.

Cuomo was pushed initially to grant Schneiderman the power by the attorney general himself after a grand jury declined to indict a New York City police officer in the choke hold death of Staten Island man Eric Garner.

But Cuomo’s rhetoric as to whether local prosecutors have a conflict of interest in such cases and executive order itself has been roundly knocked by district attorneys, who are considering a legal challenge to the order.

Updated: In a statement, Cuomo said Turner’s death while in police custody “raises questions” from the community and elected officials that “deserve answers.”

“This kind of situation is the reason that I signed Executive Order 147 last month, because the justice system must have the trust of our communities,” Cuomo said. “With the Attorney General as special prosecutor leading an independent investigation, I believe that we can begin to restore trust, eliminate any perceived conflicts of interest, and let the community know, once and for all, that justice truly is blind.”