Friday, December 26, 2014

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NYPD Officers Injured By Gunfire On Subway Released From Hospital

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Two New York City police officers who were shot while on-duty in Brooklyn Thursday night are out of the hospital.

Officers Michael Lavay and Officer Lukasz Kozicki were released Friday from Lutheran Medical Center.

Lavay was hit in the back when he and his partner confronted a man on the N train in Brooklyn.

Sources identify the suspect as Peter Jourdan, 37, of Pennsylvania.

Authorities say the plainclothes officers tried to pull him off the train around 7:30 p.m. at Fort Hamilton Parkway and 62nd Street, when he fired at them.

Officer Kozicki was hit in the upper thighs and groin.

Investigators say Officer Lavay returned fire, killing the suspect.

Another person was grazed in the leg.

Patrolmen's Benevolent Association President Pat Lynch said their courageous actions are typical for the NYPD.

"We know that these police officers put themselves between a gun and those folks on that train. That's heroic," Lynch said. "New York City police officers do that every day. We hear so often about the negative that may happen when things go wrong. This is the reality of what happens each and every day in New York City."

A family member of Peter Jourdan spoke with NY1 Friday.

Jourdan's cousin, Angelo Maldonado, said Jourdan suffered from mental illness his entire life.

Maldonado called on the city to better care for the mentally ill.

He said his cousin was severely paranoid.

"Obviously he had a weapon," Maldonado said. "There's a lot of things we don't know. We're not detectives. We weren't there. And we're thankful that the police officers are safe and we're thankful they're alive and they can go back to their families, but our cousin is dead. Our family member is not around anymore, and I look at it as a child thrown in the middle of a highway. I mean, how's that baby going to defend for himself? How's he going to get to where he's got to go to when he's in a position where he can't really help himself?"

Maldonado said Jourdan's family will be seeking legal action to better understand what happened.

Meanwhile, an off-duty officer is still recovering who was shot during a separate attempted armed robbery at his family's car dealership Thursday night.

Police say two men walked into the dealership in Olinville and said they were interested in buying a car.

One of the men then pulled a gun, according to police.

Officer Juan Pichardo tried to stop the robbery and was shot in the leg.

Despite his injury, Pichardo and an employee were able to hold down the gunman.

"When Juan got control of the guy, he said he was shot, and I said 'Oh my God,'" said Jason Marengo, a friend and co-worker at the dealership. "I took control of the guy, and Juan went and sat down."

"I ask him, I said, 'How come you don't shoot the guy, but you got the gun from him?'" said John Grishaj, a friend of Pichardo. "He said, 'I don't like to shoot people.'" That was his words. He said, 'I'd hate to do that. And when I got him, I hold and wait for other enforcement to come down.'"

Marengo said Pichardo plans to be back on the job by Saturday.

"That's what he says, he's coming right back to work," Marengo said. "Yep, he's a true soldier."

The other suspect was caught a short time later, along with two others in the getaway car.

Police Commissioner Ray Kelly says the gun in the Bronx shooting had been reported stolen in North Carolina last month.

The gun used in the subway incident was purchased in Pennsylvania.

The four suspects, all men between the ages of 22 and 25, have been hit with multiple charges, including attempted murder, robbery and assault.

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