Kevin Brennan, NYPD Officer Shot In Head, Cross-Examined In Alleged Shooter’s Trial
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – It was the second day of emotional testimony on Thursday for Kevin Brennan, the police sergeant who was shot in the head last year while responding to a call of shots fired in a Brooklyn housing complex.
CBS 2’s Amy Dardashtian was in the courtroom, where Brennan came face to face with the man who he says tried to kill him.
Brennan was cross-examined on Thursday and stayed relatively calm under pressure, Dardashtian said. The questioning took less than half an hour.
On Wednesday, Brennan described how 23-year-old Luis Ortiz allegedly tried to murder him. Jurors watched surveillance video from last year at the Bushwick housing complex, which shows Ortiz running to a building. In the video, Brennan follows and a struggle ensues.
Investigators said Ortiz then fires a bullet at point-blank range into Brennan’s head and you can see the officer fall.
Brennan testified that the last words he heard from Ortiz before losing consciousness were “F**k you, die!”
“He gets up and walks away and the sergeant lies motionless on a stairwell. I question why we give someone like this a trial,” said Ed Mullins of the Sergeants Benevolent Association.
On Thursday, fellow NYPD officers showed up to support Brennan. His recovery has been hailed as nothing short of a miracle. He tearfully said he could remember his body shaking. Within 30 seconds officers rushed to his aid. He returned home to his wife and new baby just 11 days after the bullet was removed from his skull.
“I’m blessed,” Brennan said after his release from the hospital. “God was looking out for me that night.”
He suffered mild brain damage from the injury and doctors said he lost some of his peripheral vision. But he ultimately recovered and returned to the force.
As for Ortiz, he was arrested almost immediately after the shooting. The then-21-year-old shouted a gang street phrase as he left the 90th Precinct. Since then, he has appeared more subdued in court. He’s facing an attempted murder charge and a murder charge in a separate case.
If convicted, he faces life in prison.
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