NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — A Bronx man was sentenced to 10 years in prison Thursday for the 2012 shooting of an off-duty NYPD officer.

Joseph Baez, 21, was also sentenced to 3 1/2 years of post-release supervision.

Baez had pleaded guilty to attempted murder in the shooting of Officer Nelson Vergara and another man.
The shooting happened around 4:30 a.m. on Sunday, June 25, 2012, on Phelan Place in the Bronx.

Vergara was off duty and just returning home when a group of men drinking on the block began taunting him, police said. One of them then allegedly threw a bottle.

Vergara identified himself as a police officer just as another car pulled up, police said.

“A male in his 20s exited the vehicle and began firing several times at a male in that group,” then-Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said at the time. “Another in his 20s, the one who threw the bottle.”

That was when police said the shooter turned his gun on Vergara, who fired back 11 times.

“Pop, pop, pop, pop then another pop, pop, pop, pop again,” neighbor Keith Brown said at the time.

Vergara has since been promoted to detective. He has also served two tours in Iraq as a Marine.

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