Police Officer Rocco W. Laurie

Police Officer Rocco W. Laurie

New York City Police Department, New York

End of Watch Thursday, January 27, 1972

Rocco W. Laurie

Officer Rocco Laurie and Officer Gregory Foster were assassinated by members of the Black Liberation Army while walking their patrol beat on Avenue B and East 11th Street in the 9th Precinct.

As they were walking down the street, three or four suspects walked pass them, spun around, and opened fire, shooting them in their backs. After the officers fell, the killers took their handguns and shot them several more times.

On February 14, 1972, one of two suspects was shot and killed in a gun battle with police in St. Louis, Missouri. The other suspect, arrested at the scene, had Officer Laurie's service revolver in his possession. He was returned to New York and charged with two counts of murder. He was acquitted in 1973. He was returned to Missouri where he was sentenced to 25 years in prison for convictions in the St. Louis incident. A third suspect was captured in New Orleans in 1973. He was sentenced to life in prison for the murders of Patrolman Waverly Jones and Patrolman Joseph A. Piagentiai of the New York City Police Department on May 21, 1971.

Officer Laurie had served with the agency for two years. He was survived by his wife. Officer Laurie and Officer Foster served in the U.S. Marine Corps together and were Vietnam combat veterans. When they joined the New York City Police Department they requested to be assigned to the same Precinct.

Officer Laurie is buried at Saint Peters Cemetery in West New Brighton, New York.

The Black Liberation Army was a violent, radical group that attempted to fight for independence from the United States government in the late 1960's and early 1970's. The BLA was responsible for the murders of more than 10 police officers around the country. They were also responsible for violent attacks around the country that left many police officers wounded.


  • Age 23
  • Tour 2 years
  • Badge 11019
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender One later shot and killed

Most Recent Reflection

View all 57 Reflections

rest in peace. you served in viet nam and then nypd, you did more than most and definitely went above and beyond the call of duty. you and po foster also by your mere presence in the lower east side of nyc on that fateful night and subsequent death of you both unknowling at the time helped foster the resurgence of this part of nyc to what it is today, definitely opposite of it in the 1970s. as i stated in po fosters reflection i left, as far as i know, still no honorary sign affixed to a lampost with both your names so that many may wonder and hopefully read why your names are there. honorary signs abound here on si nyc many not denoting anywhere near yours and po fosters sacrifice in 1972, lets hope this changes and we see such an honor. semper fi.

robert dowling - administrative associ
nypd = retired

July 24, 2018

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