A detective was shot and injured after a suspect opened fire during a police raid on Staten Island Thursday morning, sources reported.
The officer is now being treated at Staten Island University Hospital North for injuries not considered to be life-threatening. While grateful that the detective will survive, Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell pointed out that this was the third time in the first 20 days of 2022 that one of New York’s Finest had been shot in the line of duty.
“We’re grateful that they’re all recovering, but we’re mindful that this morning’s shooting continues to underscore how New York’s Finest put everything on the line to do the job we ask them to do,” said Sewell. “It’s officers like those we witnessed today that I am sincerely grateful to for their bravery, courage and their willingness to make every effort to make this city safe. And they need and deserve the support to do it.”
Law enforcement sources said that Thursday’s shooting happened at about 6 a.m. on Jan. 20 inside the Hartman Houses public housing complex near the corner of Rockne Street and Nome Avenue in New Springville.
Chief of Detectives James Essig said the detective and other members of the Staten Island Narcotics Squad came to the location to execute arrest and search warrants stemming from a long-term drug investigation. After entering the location, the team of officers ascended to the second floor, where the shooter opened fire on them.
“Our officer was hit in the right leg, but heroically managed to cover the members of his team with his ballistic shield,” Essig said, “saving potential injury to other members of the team.”
The other officers returned fire, striking the suspect — Nelson Pizarro, 39 — in the leg. No other injuries were reported.
Pizzaro was also brought to Staten Island University Hospital for treatment, and is expected to recover. Essig said he has seven prior arrests, including two gun-related collars outside of New York City.
Police also took into custody, without incident, the subject of their arrest warrant, identified as Anthony Marshall, 40. He was booked for criminal sale of a controlled substance.
First Deputy Mayor Lorraine Grillo visited the injured officer on behalf of Mayor Eric Adams, who is in Washington, DC to attend a meeting of the U.S. Conference of Mayors. She noted that Adams has been closely monitoring the situation, and is in constant contact as the investigation continues.
The Staten Island shooting happened less than 48 hours after another officer in the Bronx was shot Tuesday night during a struggle with an armed teenage suspect. The officer suffered injuries that were not life-threatening.
And on New Year’s Day morning, a police officer in East Harlem took a stray bullet to his head while sleeping in a vehicle outside the 25th Precinct. He suffered a fractured skull, but is now recovering.
Paul DiGiacomo, president of the Detectives Endowment Association, said Thursday’s shooting illustrated the severity of New York City’s gun problem — and he alleged that bail reform laws passed by the state legislature before the pandemic are backfiring, allowing gun criminals to quickly return to the streets.
“The NYPD has made more than 8,500 gun arrests and we walk past hundreds of guns a day,” DiGiacomo said. “And because there are so many guns ion the streets, and the policies that are in place with bail reform are not working, the people of this city are unsafe. I’m calling on the governor” and the state Senate and Assembly leaders “to fix the laws that they broke to keep the people of this city safe.”