2018-07-04 / Features

Off-Duty PANYNJ Policeman Saves Stabbing Victim In Corona


A Port Authority police officer is being hailed as a hero this week after he ran after and captured a bloodied, knife wielding man who was chasing a woman behind a Corona home on June 30.

Police said Port Authority Police Officer Giovanni Urena was off-duty, asleep in his Corona home on 104th Street near 39th Avenue at about 1:45 pm on Saturday when he awoke to Beatriz Huerta’s screams. Huerta, 31, was screaming in Spanish, saying, “My baby, my baby,” a police source said.

Urena, a five-year PANYNJ Police Department veteran assigned to an overnight tour at LaGuardia Airport, looked out his window and saw Huerta, blood streaming down her back, running from a man wielding a butcher knife.

Urena pulled on a pair of jeans and ran from his home in pursuit of Benito Abreu, 61, police said. Several neighbors who heard the screams joined Urena in the chase.

Minutes later, Urena caught Abreu and told neighbors to call 911. “The officer left his phone at home in his urgency to help the woman,” police said.

Huerta, who suffered serious stab wounds, was taken to Elmhurst Hospital Center where she was listed in stable condition.

Huerta’s 2-year-old daughter was found uninjured inside the home.

Abreu was charged with second-degree attempted murder, attempted assault, criminal possession of a weapon and menacing at his arraignment at Queens Criminal Court, where he was held without bail.

Prosecutors said Abreu was arrested on June 1 after he tried to stab his wife and 14- year-old daughter. Abreu listed an address on Roosevelt Avenue as his current residence, prosecutors said.

It is unclear what led to the attack on Huerta.

“The officer was like lightning,” a neighbor said. “He shot out of his house and ran the guy down, in like two seconds. It was a good thing he was at home, because who knows what the guy would have done to the lady otherwise,” the neighbor said.

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