Man accused of shooting NYPD officer in Queens faces attempted murder charges

QUEENS VILLAGE, N.Y. -- A man who officials say boasted of being a street "hellraiser" and who served prison time for attempted murder was arraigned on charges that he shot an NYPD officer in the head Saturday night. 25-year-old Officer Brian Moore is in critical, but stable condition at Jamaica Hospital, and is in a medically-induced coma after undergoing emergency surgery.

The suspect, 25-year-old Demetrius Blackwell, was ordered held without bail Sunday after appearing in Queens Criminal Court in a torn white jumpsuit. His hands were cuffed behind his back and legs shackled. Police in Queens Village continue to search for one critical piece of evidence - the gun.

Officer Moore, and his partner, Officer Erik Jansen, 30, exchanged words with Blackwell before he turned suddenly and fired at least twice, striking Moore, Bratton said. Officer Jansen then radioed for help.

"The man immediately removed the firearm from his waistband and turned in the direction of the officers and deliberately fired several times at the vehicle, striking Officer Moore in the head," Bratton said at a press conference at a Queens hospital.

Renee Stoll has more on Officer Moore:

The shooting took place Saturday around 6:30 p.m. near 212th Street in Queens Village.

"They did not have an opportunity to get out and return fire," the commissioner said at a Saturday night news conference at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center with Mayor Bill de Blasio and other officials.

More than 100 NYPD officers packed a courtroom in Kew Gardens, Queens. Demetrius Blackwell was shackled and cuffed, and had no choice but to look them in the eye. The 35-year-old allegedly tried to kill one of their own. After he was arrested, he told police, "they call me 'D' hell raiser on the streets,"

One woman who did not want to give her name, lives in a house in Queens Village that was surrounded by police on Saturday night. The officers were looking for the weapon that Blackwell allegedly used to shoot officer Brian Moore in the head.

"He was staying 'partner, stay with me, stay with me," the unidentified woman said.

The woman was talking about Officer Erik Jansen. Jansen's partner, Officer Brian Moore had just been critically shot. Moments before, the plainclothes officers, while riding in their unmarked car, spotted Blackwell, and saw him carrying what they believed was a gun. The officers asked him what he was carrying, and without warning, he allegedly pulled out a gun, and fired. One bullet struck Moore in the face.

The woman watched fellow officers place Moore in another patrol car and rush the 25-year-old to the hospital. She says she was standing on her front steps, when Blackwell calmly walked up.

"We weren't talking about anything in particular, we weren't talking about what was going on with this - he was acting totally normal," she says.

By then, teams of officers were looking for the gunman. She says police told her and Blackwell for safety reasons, to go inside, and they did. Moments later, everything changed.

"The first SWAT went to this house, and then we saw them coming for ours, guns drawn, they said to open the door," she says, not having any idea what was going on.

The woman says officers took Blackwell away in handcuffs.

The married father of three has a lengthy criminal record, and just served seven years in prison for attempted murder, and has been arrested for among other things, robbery and assault.

"He was gunned down by a miscreant who prides himself on being called 'hell raiser', well as the judge just put him behind bars, he can raise hell in Rikers Island," said PBA President Pat Lynch.

The two officers, both with about four years on the job, were assigned to an anti-crime unit.

Mayor Bill de Blasio said in a news conference that Officer Moore comes from a police family - his father and uncle both retired as sergeants with the department - and de Blasio praised his service.

"It is a painful day for all of us," said Mayor de Blasio, "It is a reminder of the dangers that all of our officers face every single day."

After Moore, who was driving, was shot his partner, Jansen, radioed for help and a nearby patrol car arrived and rushed Moore to the hospital - "in all likelihood potentially saving the officer's life," Bratton said.

Moore resides in Massapequa and his father and uncle are retired NYPD sergeants. Witnesses described the shooter and directed officers in the direction he fled, Bratton said.

Neighbors near the scene of the shooting were surprised by the violence and described the area as quiet and safe.

"You walk down the street, no trouble," said Sandreaus Adam, 52. "This is not a neighborhood where you're just going to hear shots."

(Some information from the Associated Press). null
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