Investigators Unsure Who Shot Heroic 18-Year Veteran

POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Outside the Police Department on Friday night, a flag was at half staff in memory of an officer killed doing his job.

“Today is perhaps the worst day our city has seen in perhaps our history,” Poughkeepsie Mayor John Tkazyik said.

The officer, an 18-year veteran whose name was not immediately released, was shot in the head during a harrowing scene at the Poughkeepsie Train Station after responding to shots being fired, reports CBS 2’s Sean Hennessey.

“He saw the subject leaving the scene with a child in his arms,” Poughkeepsie Police Chief Ron Knapp said.

WCBS 880 Reporter Monica Miller with the latest details from Police Chief Knapp

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That’s when the slain officer didn’t waste a moment.

“This officer is not just a hero for giving up his life but also for saving this child, for getting him away from this madman and into the arms of a civilian who got him to safety,” witness Mike Archer said.

After that, all hell broke loose as cops who arrived as back-up confronted the man.

“Cops are just shooting down … everyone’s like running around,” witness Felicia Albero said.

About a dozen shots were fired, and when it was over, a cop was dead, and that wasn’t all.

“The subject was shot at this stage. We don’t know if it was another officer’s gun or if it was his own gun,” Chief Knapp said.

And when police went to the suspect’s vehicle, they found his wife also shot dead police believe, by the suspect they had confronted.

On Friday night, investigators were processing the scene for bullets and bloodshed. Unknown is who shot the fallen officer — the suspect or friendly fire. What is known is an officer died Friday at an area hospital, and those in town were stunned by the violence.

“I’m shocked because you really don’t find these things happening here,” resident Audrey Horn said.

Knapp said he believes the gunman and his wife weren’t from Poughkeepsie, a city of about 30,000 people about 70 miles south of Albany in the Hudson Valley. Their names have not been released.

A second officer suffered minor injuries and a half dozen others were involved, Knapp said.

Comments (9)
  1. Lori says:

    ~ Sending my deepest sympathy to the family and friends of the officer and to Poughkeepsie Police Department. You are in the thoughts and prayers of many. May you find strength to carry you through this time of unimaginable loss ~

  2. Jodie Anne says:

    Hug your loved ones when you leave the house…you never know if you’re going to make it back home. My prayers are with the family, friends and fellow officers.

  3. Bullett says:

    Sad day indeed to the family of the falling officer, and to the community and fellow officers he served with.

  4. Franco Jason Di Palma says:

    As a retired NYS Parole Officer I wish to extend my deepest sympathy to the officers family and to the Poughkeepsie Police Department. It is a dangerous city out there. Thanks for doing what you can to keep it safe.

  5. BC says:

    An absolute tragedy. To the hero cop who put his life on the line, rest in peace. Your family and friends who suffered a great loss today are in my prayers. Hope the two other officers wounded are able to make a full recovery.

  6. J.J. from Nyc says:

    That officer is a hero. HE was able to get the baby out of this madmans hands. So sad for the officers family, truly a hero to the end. R.I.P.

  7. SCATX43 says:

    For the officer’s family and loved ones, I am so very sorry for your loss. For the officers of Poughkeepsie PD, please know your brothers and sisters in blue in Arkansas are keeping you in our thoughts and prayers.

  8. You says:

    Poughkeepsie is full of low life amimals.

  9. karen s says:

    my heart and thoughts are with the officers wounded in this afternoon’s shooting. i hope for your recovery. to the innocent youngster, i hope you will be with people who will love you and keep you safe from the violence that went on around you today. may the angels protect you.

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