Police Officer Edward R. Byrne

Police Officer Edward R. Byrne

New York City Police Department, New York

End of Watch Friday, February 26, 1988

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Edward R. Byrne

Police Officer Edward Byrne was shot and killed from ambush at the intersection of Inwood Street and 107th Avenue in South Jamaica, Queens, while protecting a witness in a drug case.

He was parked in a marked patrol car in front of the witness's home when two suspects approached him. One of the suspects knocked on the passenger window to distract him as the second suspect ran up to him beside the driver's window and opened fire, striking him in the head three times. Two additional suspects served as lookouts.

On March 4, 1988, two suspects, 19 and 24, were apprehended in Queens. The other two, both 22. were picked up the next day. The 19-year-old was identified as the killer. He was also wanted for the murder of a woman, 23, in Greenwich, Connecticut, a few weeks earlier and the murder of a woman, 21, in Queens a week later. All four were sentenced to 25 years to life. Officer Byrne's killer has a parole hearing in 2024. The 24-year-old has a parole hearing in May of 2023. One of the 22-year-old suspects has a parole hearing in November 2022. The other has a parole hearing in October of 2023.

The gang's leader, 29, serving a 25 years to life sentence for drug and gun charges, ordered Officer Byrne's murder. As a result of his conviction, federal prosecutors were able to link him and his associates to the murder of Parole Officer Brian F. Rooney which he was convicted of from October 1985. He was paroled on April 5 2022, and taken into custody by federal officers.

Officer Byrne had served just seven months with the New York City Police Department. He is survived by his parents and three brothers. Officer Byrne's father was also a New York City Police Officer.

In February 2018, 91st Avenue in Jamaica, Queens was renamed Edward Byrne Avenue. President George H.W. Bush kept Officer Byrne's badge with him during his entire campaign for president.


  • Age 22
  • Tour 7 months
  • Badge 14072

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; .38 caliber
  • Offender Sentenced to life


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Your assassination outraged me and inspired me to become a NYC police officer in the late 80's. I'll never forget the experience and the total devastation to your family. For as long as I live, I will never forget. Soar with heaven's warriors. Watch over us.

Lt. Paul Sanzone, NYPD (ret.)

February 26, 2024

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