NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — An NYPD police officer shot in the head by a murder suspect in Brooklyn 10 days ago left a Manhattan hospital in a wheelchair Friday afternoon to a cheering and clapping crowd of blue.

Officer Kevin Brennan, who left wearing a No. 91 Justin Tuck jersey, was all smiles as hundreds of uniformed officers gave him a hero’s send-off as he left Bellevue Hospital.

The sound of bagpipes mingled with a thunderous applause as the 28-year-old was immediately escorted into a waiting vehicle to return home to his wife and 2-month-old daughter, Maeve.

Brennan also received a very special homecoming visit from Tuck, when he showed up at his home.  Tuck and Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano had been at an unrelated event at a nearby pizzeria.

“This young man has such spirit, such resolve and I think that’s all very much a part of his recovery,” Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said. “It’s just amazing, couldn’t ask for anything better.”

1010 WINS’ Al Jones reports

The six-year veteran of the force was shot at point-blank range on Jan. 31 during a struggle with 21-year-old Luis Ortiz at the Bushwick Houses, police said. The bullet lodged at the base of Brennan’s skull.

Brennan’s partner, who was just steps away when Ortiz allegedly fired the shot, said he knows how close this came to a tragic ending.

“He’s a good friend of mine. He’s the toughest kid I know. So he made it out alright,” Officer Michael Burbridge told CBS 2’s Emily Smith.

“If you don’t believe in miracles…you saw [my son] walk out of the hospital…that is a miracle,” said Brennan’s father, Dave.

Kevin Brennan suffered mild brain damage from the injury and doctors said he lost some of his peripheral vision.

Ortiz has been charged with attempted murder of a police officer, assault on a police officer, criminal possession of a weapon and menacing.

Prosecutor Lewis Lieberman called the shooting an “evil act by an evil individual” and said it was “an assassination attempt.”

WCBS 880’s Alex Silverman On The Step Forward For Brennan

Ortiz has a lengthy criminal record and police said he is also the prime suspect in a New Year’s Day murder. Brennan is expected to continue his rehabilitation at an outpatient facility on Long Island.

“Whether or not he’ll return to service is something that the Police Department and he will have to decide,” Dr. Ronald Simon said.

Officials said Officer Brennan wants nothing more than to go back to work, protecting the same  streets of Brooklyn where he nearly lost his life.

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Comments (7)
  1. Rudy rules says:

    If I was the cop I would have spit in tucks face and said,you look just like the animal who shot me

  2. NYC says:

    Did Justin Tuck visit the family who the NYPD gunned down there son in the bathroom and he had no gun?

    1. KPMc says:

      Oh… you mean that drug dealer who when finally confronted by the police ran back to his mommy’s apartment and put her and his younger siblings in danger instead of facing the situation he himself created?

      No… that would be in poor taste!

    2. AV says:

      Hey NYC, why did the perp run from the cops in the first place, maybe because he’s a street thug who puts his whole neighborhood in danger every day and night !

      1. NYC says:

        OH I see. Now the NYPD has been given the power to gun down drug dealers if he was one that are unarmed.

  3. Capt. Bill's Daughter says:

    welcome home to your family & friends kevin brennan. my dad was nypd for 30+ years, so, you’re my extended family. fresh air and home, a good way to spend a friday. a big thumbs up to justin tuck for his acknowledging a real hero.i wish you well in your rehab kevin. justice will be served, but today is a good day for the brennans, theiir friends and 2 families. live long & live well. daddy’s home maeve!

  4. NYPD SWINE says:


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