NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The suspect in Tuesday night’s shooting of a New York City cop in Brooklyn has been charged with attempted murder of a police officer, among other charges.
Police said 21-year-old Luis Ortiz shot Officer Kevin Brennan, 29, in the head following a stare down between Ortiz and another man. Ortiz fired at that other individual, which prompted the police response.
Brennan is in critical but stable condition, but doctors said he’s expected to make a full recovery.
Even in handcuffs, Ortiz tried to brag and boast as he was being led out of the precinct in Williamsburg. Ortiz was greeted by screams from a women in the street and a cousin and other relatives, CBS 2’s Pablo Guzman was told, yelling in support.
Ortiz shouted at reporters, telling them to “take a picture of me.” He also told his family that he loved them as he was led from the 90th Precinct to Brooklyn Criminal Court for arraignment.
Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said surveillance video shows Ortiz pointing a gun at the officer just before the cop was shot in the head at point-blank range. Kelly also described the violent scene that was seen on surveillance video as he spoke with reporters, including 1010 WINS’ Juliet Papa.
LISTEN: 1010 WINS’ Juliet Papa reports
“You also see that Ortiz has a gun in his hand, they struggle, fall into sort of an alcove, where you can’t actually see the shooting. But you see Ortiz with his arm around the officer’s head and then he shot. He doesn’t move after he’s shot,” Kelly said.
Ortiz has also been charged with assault on a police officer, criminal possession of a weapon and menacing.
LISTEN: WCBS 880’s Rich Lamb reports
Police said Brennan and two other officers had responded to the Bushwick Houses around 9 p.m. Tuesday for a call of shots fired.
As Brennan was rushed into emergency surgery, police said they were able to track down and apprehend Ortiz. Detectives said they also recovered a revolver at the scene.
At the news conference Tuesday night, Kelly showed reporters a jar containing the bullet that was removed from behind Brennan’s right ear.
“What amounts to a whole bullet was removed from the base of the officer’s skull right in the emergency room,” he said. “And he is one lucky young man.”
Mayor Michael Bloomberg visited Brennan at Bellevue late Tuesday night.
“We have someone who has dedicated his life to protecting all of us who has had a much too close brush with death,” Bloomberg said. “God in this case was kind. It could have turned out an awful lot worse.”
LISTEN: WCBS 880’s Long Island Bureau Chief Mike Xirinachs reports
Officer Brennan lives in Garden City Park and is the father of a 6-week-old girl named Maeve. Brennan’s friends and family are still shaken from the news.
“He’s a good kid, he’s a great guy. He’s a great cop,” said Brennan’s uncle, Michael Brennan.
“Never want to hear of this happening to anybody. It was a shock,” said neighbor Ron Artusa.
LISTEN: 1010 WINS’ Mona Rivera reports
“Thank God he’s OK, that’s the most important thing,” said John Skinner, a friend and retired NYPD detective who was also injured on the job and says he feels for Brennan’s young wife. “You dread that day when that police car comes in front of your house and they have to give you some bad news.”
Resident Kathy Ketarena was relieved when she learned the officer would survive his wounds.
“You feel good that he is alive,” she said. “He’s a young man and has got so much to live for.”
Cops said Ortiz was already wanted for questioning in the New Year’s Day murder of 34-year-old Shannon McKinney. Authorities also said Ortiz has at least 14 other prior arrests.
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