Investigator Joseph Thomas Aversa

Investigator Joseph Thomas Aversa

New York State Police, New York

End of Watch Monday, March 5, 1990

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Joseph Thomas Aversa

Investigator Joseph Aversa was accidentally shot and killed while conducting an undercover drug deal.

Investigator Aversa was conducting surveillance of undercover negotiations during a cocaine investigation when the drug dealers fired at the undercover officer. Investigator Aversa led other task force members to the scene and was fatally wounded by another officer during an exchange of gunfire with the two drug traffickers. Two other task force members were injured in this incident. One of the suspects was shot and wounded and both were taken into custody at the scene. It was later determined that Investigator Aversa was accidentally shot by another officer.

The trial judge ruled that Investigator Aversa's death was a direct result of the actions of the suspects. Both were convicted of second-degree murder, attempted murder, and aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer. One was sentenced to 45 years to life and the other to 39 years to life.

Investigator Aversa had served with the New York State Police for six years and is survived by his wife. His wife became a State Trooper in 1994 and was assigned his shield number. His father is a retired New York City police officer.


  • Age 31
  • Tour 6 years
  • Badge 2345

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire (Inadvertent)


Most Recent Reflection

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After all these years the sacrifice Joe made is not and never will be forgotten by the people who served with him in the NYDETF.

Group Supervisor Frank Drew
DEA/ NYDETF/ Group 82

May 5, 2024

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