NEW YORK (CBS 2) — Fellow officers and the fiancée of veteran Police Officer Alain Schaberger were left mourning his loss Monday after what began as a domestic dispute in Brooklyn over the weekend.
Police rushed to Bergen Street on Sunday on a domestic call after a woman complained about her boyfriend, 42-year-old George Villanueva.
Police tracked him to his Boerum Hill home in a fateful encounter. Villanueva is accused of pushing Officer Schaberger, a 10-year veteran of the force, over a railing after police responded to the scene. The officer fell nine feet to the basement before landing on his head and breaking his neck. He was pronounced dead at Lutheran Hospital.
Schaberger’s fiancée, Shoshone Peguese, was left to grieve in her Cortlandt Manor home.
“To have to die like that, it was just a senseless death. And personally I’m lost. I’m really lost,” Peguese told CBS 2’s Scott Rapoport.
With bitter sadness, Peguese recalled seeing her fiancee for the last time at the hospital after he died.
“The last time I saw Alain I know he was looking down at me from heaven,” she said.
Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said Villanueva had one handcuff on his wrist when he allegedly pushed Schabarger with both hands. Villanueva was charged with first-degree murder and is being held without bail.
“It’s a tragedy all the way around, for both families. My heart goes out to all of them,” said neighbor Ivonne Rosario.
Rosario said she was shocked because Villanueva comes from a good family.
“Honest, hard-working people, very family-oriented. My heart bleeds for his mom, because I’m a mom and I can’t imagine what she must be going through,” she said.
Police said Villanueva had a long rap sheet including 28 arrests, mostly for burglary and robbery. He apparently also had a history of problems with his girlfriend, including a dozen calls to police in recent years.
“I think it was just a matter of time,” said neighbor William Daly.
Daly said he frequently saw their volatile relationship erupt outside on the street, but this time, with fatal consequences.
“She made the call and then the poor police officer was the victim,” he said.
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