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Police Officer Anthony J. Abruzzo, Jr. | New York City Police Department, New York New York City Police Department, New York

Police Officer

Anthony J. Abruzzo, Jr.

New York City Police Department, New York

End of Watch: Wednesday, December 16, 1981

Bio & Incident Details

Age: 34

Tour: 13 years

Badge # 3204

Cause: Gunfire

Weapon: Handgun

Offender: Three sentenced to life in prison

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Police Officer Abruzzo was shot and killed when he attempted to intervene in the robbery of his father-in-law at 47-22 Hollis Court Boulevard in Flushing, while off-duty.

His father-in-law had just returned home from work when three men approached him and struck him over the head with a gun. When Officer Abruzzo heard the commotion from inside his father-in-law's house, he ran out to assist. As he exited the house, unarmed, he called out to the suspects, "police officer." The suspects turned and opened fire at Officer Abruzzo, striking him in the chest. When Officer Abruzzo's wife and brother-in-law ran to his side to help, they were shot at by the suspect also, but were not injured.

Officer Abruzzo was transported to Long Island Jewish Medical Center where he died from his wounds.

The suspects then fled the scene in a stolen car. They were apprehended six months later after they cashed checks that they had taken out of the stolen car. All three suspects were convicted of murder, attempted murder, and attempted robbery. They were subsequently sentenced to 25 years to life in prison.

Officer Abruzzo had served with the New York City Police Department for 13 years and was assigned to the 109th Precinct. He was survived by his wife and one child.

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My Dad and I were on our way home and as we turned off Hollis Court onto 193rd St, we saw a silver Cadillac speeding away and a woman running into the street yelling "They just shot my son!" My dad took off after the Cadillac, I was very scared at that point, but he was determined to follow these murderers. The last we saw it was near the Blue Bay diner. When we went back, we told the cops what we saw. A few years later, I moved out of NY and now live in Florida. I never forgot this, but what really brought it back was I met a new neighbor at our community pool and somehow started talking about jury duty. He proceeded to tell me of a jury he was on 30 years ago, that convicted some guys who killed an off-duty cop in Queens who came out to help his father-in-law. Unbelievable how small a world it is! Glad to see justice served and it was a day I'll never forget about how brave Officer Abruzzo was in protecting his family. R.I.P.

Ray Mackin
May 6, 2015

 

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