2015-05-06 / Front Page

Ex-Con Charged In Murder Of Officer Brian Moore

BY LIZ GOFF


Police Officer Brian Moore was ambushed as he sat with his partner, Police Officer Erik Jensen, in an unmarked patrol car on a Queens Village street on May 2. He succumbed to his wounds on May 4 at Jamaica Hospital. Police Officer Brian Moore was ambushed as he sat with his partner, Police Officer Erik Jensen, in an unmarked patrol car on a Queens Village street on May 2. He succumbed to his wounds on May 4 at Jamaica Hospital. A Queens Grand Jury on May 5 indicted a career criminal with a history of police assault and weapons possession in the murder of Police Officer Brian Moore, who was ambushed as he sat with his partner, Police Officer Erik Jensen, in an unmarked patrol car on a Queens Village street on May 2.

Friends said Moore left his Massapequa home, headed to his job as a plainclothes anti-crime officer at the 105th Precinct.

Hours later, Moore, 25, was in a medically induced coma, fighting for his life in the trauma unit at Jamaica Hospital Center.

Moore lost his fight to survive on May 4, less than two days after he was shot twice in the head by a man identified as Demetrius Blackwell, who was rearrested and arraigned on charges of first-degree murder of a police officer.

“I am deeply saddened by the passing today of New York City Police Officer Brian Moore who lost his life in the line of duty while protecting and serving our community,” said District Attorney Richard A. Brown.

Moore is the fifth city police officer shot in the line of duty since last December. He is the third police officer to die from his injuries.

On the force nearly five years, Moore had been driving an unmarked NYPD car shortly after 6 pm on May 2 when he and Jensen spotted Blackwell, whom they knew was a career criminal with a long history of weapons-related arrests, police sources said.

The two cops realized Blackwell was “fiddling with an object in his waistband” near the corner of 212th Street and 104th Road, police sources said. The officers pulled up behind Blackwell who realized they were cops and “words were exchanged,” the sources said.

Without warning, Blackwell, 35, whipped a gun out of his waistband and fired at least two rounds into the unmarked police car, striking Moore in the cheek and head.

“He (Blackwell) immediately opened fire on them before they had time to get out of the vehicle,” Police Commissioner William Bratton said at a Saturday night press briefing at Jamaica Hospital.

“They were gonna stop him to check for a gun and he just opened up on them,” a police source said. “Brian didn’t stand a chance.”

Jensen, who was not injured in the gunfire, immediately called for backup and when officers from the 105th Precinct arrived at the scene, the cops put Moore in another police vehicle and raced him to Jamaica Hospital, the sources said, “They knew he was hurt too badly to wait for ambulance.”

Police launched a massive manhunt for Blackwell, who was arrested approximately 90 minutes later, hiding nearby. Bratton praised neighbors who spotted Blackwell running from the scene and gave police information that led them to his whereabouts.

On May 4, police recovered the gun in the backyard of a nearby home, authorities said. The weapon contained two live rounds at the time it was recovered. Police officials said the weapon was one of nine guns stolen from a Georgia gun shop that made its way to the New York City black market.

“This was an unprovoked attack and coldblooded murder of Police Officer Brian Moore, one of our city’s Finest, in the line of duty,” said Borough President Melinda Katz. “We deeply mourn this terrible loss. Any attack on our officers is an attack on our society.”

At his arraignment in Queens Criminal Court on May 4, Blackwell had been charged with two counts of first-degree attempted murder of a police officer, one count of firstdegree aggravated assault on a police officer, one count of first-degree assault on a police officer and two counts of criminal possession of a weapon. Blackwell was held without bail. DA Brown said he would go before the grand jury to upgrade the charges.

Blackwell’s court-appointed attorney argued at the arraignment that his client “emphatically” denies the charges, that Blackwell was taken into custody without a search warrant and that the arrest may be a case of “mistaken identity.”

Bratton described Moore as an “exceptional officer” who made 159 arrests and received four meritorious awards during his brief NYPD career. Bratton asked the people of New York City to “pray for Brian, for his family,” for his fellow officers at the 105th Precinct and the entire NYPD.

“Brian’s death is a great loss to his family and the City of New York,” Bratton said.

Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association President Patrick Lynch spoke outside Jamaica Hospital shortly after Moore passed away, saying, “There is no closure for the families of New York City police officers who die in the line of duty.”

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