Video: NYPD officer injured in ambush receives hero sendoff from hospital
Officials condemned the weekend attacks carried out by a suspect with a history of violence against law enforcement
Staten Island Advance
STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — After an NYPD officer was shot in a marked police van — an act Commissioner Dermot Shea called an “assassination attempt" — the injured cop received a warm send-off as he left the hospital on Sunday.
“Despite being shot in the chin & neck last night, Police Officer Stroffolino goes home today, giving his fellow officers — & everyone we serve — an inspirational thumbs-up,” Shea wrote on Twitter.
“We thank him for his heroic service to our city, and wish him a speedy recovery,” Shea added.
The shooting occurred on the 900 block of Simpson Street in the Bronx on 8:27 p.m., according to police, when a man engaged the officers in conversation before pulling out a firearm and shooting at the cops — striking an officer in the neck and chin before they were able to drive off.
The suspect initially fled to parts unknown, according to a statement from the Deputy Commissioner of Public Information.
Less than 12 hours later, an armed man —believed to be the same perpetrator of the aforementioned shooting — entered the 41st Precinct station house and opened fire, injuring a lieutenant hit by gunfire in the arm during the ambush.
“For the second time in less than 12 hours, members of the New York City Police Department have been targeted specifically and shot in attempts to murder the very people who work so hard day and night to keep the people of this city safe,” Shea said at a press conference after the incident.
Despite being shot in the chin & neck last night, Police Officer Stroffolino goes home today, giving his fellow officers — & everyone we serve — an inspirational thumbs-up.— Commissioner Shea (@NYPDShea) February 9, 2020
We thank him for his heroic service to our city, and wish him a speedy recovery. pic.twitter.com/NW7FerMEqm
The second shooting was captured on video inside of the station house, according to Shea, and showed the suspect entering the precinct before firing multiple rounds toward the desk area and a second location inside the building, discharging a 9mm pistol “directly at uniformed members of service.”
The injured lieutenant returned fire but did not strike the suspect, Shea said, but the perpetrator was quickly taken into custody — lying down “only after he ran out of bullets."
Shea said the suspect had a “violent criminal history,” and was paroled in 2017 after a shooting incident in the Bronx, a subsequent carjacking and a car crash where he engaged in a gunfight with members of the NYPD in 2002.
A senior police official identified the alleged gunman as Robert Williams, according to an NBC report. The official reportedly said Williams was paroled in 2017 after an attempted murder conviction.
Police said that there were no charges as of 4:10 p.m.
“It is only by the grace of God and the heroic actions of those inside the building that took him into custody that we are not talking about police officers murdered inside of a New York City police precinct,” Shea said on Sunday.
I’ve said it before & I’ll say it again: Words matter — they affect people’s actions.— Commissioner Shea (@NYPDShea) February 9, 2020
In the wake of anti-police rhetoric advocating violence against our protectors, we’re lucky recent attempts on cops’ lives failed.
EVERYONE should speak out against such disgusting behavior. pic.twitter.com/3WJOAjwzBR
Mayor Bill de Blasio, who attended both police press conferences directly following each shooting, condemned the attacks.
“We have to understand this, as a city, as a nation, our entire society has to understand an attack on a police officer is an attack on all of us," calling the shootings a “premeditated effort to kill.”
The Police Benevolent Association (PBA) released a statement Sunday following news of the second shooting.
“It is a double miracle that we are not preparing for two funerals right now,” said Patrick Lynch, PBA president. “These targeted attacks are exactly what we have warned against... our elected officials need to start listening to us and working with us — not against us — to fix the deteriorating environment on our streets.”
All injured officers are expected to fully recover.
- Police Heroes