NYPD released the names and pictures of the two officers murdered Saturday in their marked patrol car by an out of town gunman, while on assignment in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn.
Officer Rafael Ramos, 40, an NYPD officer since 2012, and Officer Wenjian Liu, 32, a seven year veteran of the NYPD, both “died in the line of duty protecting a city they love,” stated top NYPD officials at a press conference yesterday.
The officers were ambushed by criminal assailant, Ismaaiyl Abdula Brinsley, 28, traveling from Maryland, after he took to social media claiming to be ready to commit revenge killings against police for the deaths of Eric Garner and Michael Brown. Brinsley, a career criminal, with a rap sheet dating back to at least 2004 that includes strings of arrests made in multiple states.
Early yesterday, before travelling to Brooklyn and killing two officers, Brinsley shot his former girlfriend in the abdomen at her home, about 20 miles outside of Baltimore. Cops and medics were called to the home around 5:45 a.m.
A family member of the girlfriend informed the press that after being shot she underwent surgery and is expected to survive.
Brinsley fled the scene and was tracked by Baltimore police to New York via his cellphone. At approximately 1:30 p.m. Baltimore County detectives became aware of Brinsley’s activity at a now closed instagram account named @dontrunup, believed to be his ex-girlfriend’s account.
A potentially incriminating screenshot from the former girlfriend’s now defunct account has been made made public.
“I’m putting wings on pigs today. They take 1 of ours … let’s take 2 of theirs,” Brinsley writes, next to a photo of the silver semi-automatic Taurus handgun. Brinsley attached the three following hashtags, #ShootThePolice, #RIPErivGarner (sic) and #RIPMikeBrown. Brinsley followed up his last post on the social site, “This may be my final post … I’m putting pigs in a blanket.”
Baltimore police contacted NYPD about the suspect around 2:10 p.m.
The attack happened at 2:45 p.m., as the officers sat parked on Tompkins Ave. near Myrtle Ave. directly outside the Tompkins House, a housing project prone to violence. P.O. Ramos and P.O. Liu were assigned to keep a continued presence in the area by the 84th precinct. According to cops and witnesses, Brinsley approached the car at the passenger side and fired several rounds into their parked NYPD vehicle.
Witnesses saw two officers exit the vehicle and stumble as they fell to the ground. Courtney Felix, 23, at a friend’s apartment overlooking the scene, told a local paper, “They looked like they were really hurt.” Felix also noted, “They were struggling to get out of the car.”
Witnesses also stated they saw immediate and rapid police response, with close to “75 uniforms and undercovers” appearing within “moments.”
Brinsley committed suicide in a nearby subway platform after being closely pursued by cops on foot. Police stated he shot himself in the head at the subway station at Myrtle-Willoughby Aves, a local stop on the G line. The gun pictured on Brensley’s social media account was found by his side.
Medics performed CPR and transported the downed police officers to Woodhull Hospital, Officer Rafael Ramos and Officer Wenjian Liu were pronounced dead at approximately 5 p.m.
Local police departments in Rockland quickly released statements following news of the assassinations of their nearby brothers in blue.
Orangetown Police Dept said, “Our heartfelt thoughts and prayers go out to the NYPD and the officers’ families. Their sacrifice will never be forgotten by our community.”
Suffern Police Department stated, “Our sincerest condolences to the NYPD who lost two of its members a short while ago in a shooting. Many of their officers live in our community and our thoughts and prayers are with all of you. “
Following the point blank shooting, a copycat NYPD killing was attempted near a housing project in the Bronx, early Sunday morning. The male shooter aimed at two NYPD officers only failing to execute due to his gun jamming.
Investigators grabbed the attempted assassin after he dropped his gun and ran into the Millbrook Houses on Saint Ann’s Ave. in Port Morris, sources said.
The political climate in NYC surrounding the NYPD has reached a feverish boil, with Police Union and members of law enforcement publicly blaming and shunning Mayor Bill deBlasio for not standing behind the grand jury decision not to indict Staten Island NYPD officer Daniel Panteleo in the death of Eric Garner.
The NYPD union president went so far as to say DeBlasio had “blood on his hands.”