The 27-year-old officer’s bullet-resistant vest left him only bruised. The bullet did not draw blood, CBS2’s Dave Carlin reported.
“We’ll call this the Christmas miracle,” said Police Commissioner Dermot Shea.
The officer is now back home on Long Island. According to his father, the officer knows he’s lucky, but said he was just doing his job.
He’s now a living reminder of how crucial it is for officers to wear their bullet-resistant vests.
“Our officer is struck once in the back, where it penetrates the vest approximately right here and does not penetrate the skin,” Shea said, pointing to the spot where the bullet struck the vest.
Watch John Dias’s Report:
Police said the officer and his partner were responding to a domestic violence call on Bergen Street in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. A woman called 911, saying her adult daughter’s boyfriend was on his way there and threatening to do bodily harm.
“Essentially saying ‘Get here quick. Get here now. He’s gonna come over here and shoot the place up,'” Shea said.
Police say that man, William Moss, 20, arrived with a pink 9 millimeter handgun and fired twice while police were interviewing the woman’s daughter.
Without hesitation, they went directly into harm’s way to protect her, to protect a stranger — & they did just that. And they’d do it again tomorrow.
This is another grave reminder of the dangers your brave officers face every day as they protect NYC — as they protect you.
— Commissioner Shea (@NYPDShea) December 25, 2020
According to the NYPD, the officers fired 11 shots before Moss surrendered after a two-block chase near the scene. The gun Moss used was also recovered.
A similar situation unfolded a few weeks earlier in Queens. Two NYPD officers were hurt and the suspect was fatally shot.
Moss faces attempted murder, assault, reckless endangerment and weapons charges. He was taken from the 77th Precinct Station house to Brooklyn Criminal Court on Friday afternoon and was due to be arraigned in the evening.
Police said Moss did not appear to have a previous criminal record, other than being served summonses for smoking marijuana.
Police department leaders say the story of the officer’s survival will be used repeatedly during training.
We stand in unity with our fellow cop and wish him a speedy and full recovery. pic.twitter.com/Wmhr1Tkzek
— Detectives' Endowment Association (@NYCPDDEA) December 25, 2020
“We stand in unity with our fellow cop and wish him a speedy and full recovery,” the Detectives Endowment Association wrote on Twitter.
“We know that during the COVID crisis, we’ve seen horrible instances of domestic violence. We know during the holidays, unfortunately, tragically, a lot of the worst instincts come out in some people,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio, who met with the officer at Kings County Hospital.
“Because the NYPD was there, that woman is alive right now. Because our officer put himself in harm’s way, an innocent woman is alive tonight,” de Blasio said Thursday.
Marcus Williams, a witness, said he heard the gunshots and saw the commotion.
“Sad that it happened. Not the time of the year that it should be happening. But, glad the officer is doing OK,” Williams said.
He and others around the scene were disappointed that violence would invade their neighborhood on what should be a peaceful holiday. But, like city officials, they found joy in the officer’s survival, too.
MORE FROM CBS NEW YORK:
- Police: Man Grabs 17-Year-Old’s Buttocks, Spits In Her Face On Queens Bus
- 5 Killed When 2 Cars Crash In Yonkers; Authorities Say Speeding Driver Slammed Into Car Carrying 4 People
- NYPD: Woman Assaulted On Subway For Not Wearing Mask
CBS2’s John Dias contributed to this report.