New York City officer killed during traffic stop shootout, first cop slaying for city in 2 years

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Charges are pending Tuesday against the man who allegedly shot and killed a decorated police officer during a Queens traffic stop the prior evening, as New York City reels from its first slaying of an NYPD cop in two years.

The 34-year-old suspect, who has not been identified, was shot in the back amid the frenzy in Far Rockaway. He is expected to survive.

According to investigators, NYPD officer Jonathan Diller, a three-year member of the force assigned to the Community Response Team, was with another officer near Mott Avenue and Beach 19th Street when the two approached a vehicle illegally parked at a bus stop around 6 p.m. Monday. Two men were inside the vehicle.

New York City Police Officer Jonathan Diller.
New York City Police Officer Jonathan Diller.NYPD

Authorities said the passenger got out of the vehicle with the gun and fired, shooting Diller in the torso underneath his bulletproof vest. Diller’s partner returned fire, striking the suspect.

The suspect then dropped the gun, and Diller tried to grab it, officials said. The officer was taken to a hospital in critical condition and later died, New York City Mayor Eric Adams said at a late-evening press conference.

“It was because of a senseless act of violence…a person had a total disregard for the safety of this city,” Adams said.

“This dangerous individual inflicted a level of violence that took the life of a police officer, of a husband, a son,” the mayor continued. “This is a loved one that we lost, a young man. My heart goes out to his family …We lost one of our sons today, and it is extremely painful.”

The driver of the car that had been pulled over was previously arrested on gun charges in April 2023, according to police officials, and had 14 prior arrests. He was not the man with the gun. He was taken into custody at the scene.

The second officer was taken to a hospital for treatment of Tinnitus. He was not wounded in the gunfight.

Video of the scene shows a car with an apparent bullet hole in the passenger side door. Officers recovered a firearm at the scene. The shooting took place right outside of City Councilwoman Selvena Brooks-Powers’ office.

“There will be plenty of time for anger, grief and for processing pain. But right now, our thoughts are with our fellow officers family, his fellow cops, and every member of the New York Police Department. But most of all, they’re with the officer himself,” said NYPD Commissioner Edward Caban.

Read more from NBC New York

In his three years with the NYPD, Diller had received four department recognitions.

“It takes unimaginable courage to protect and serve New York City, knowing there’s a chance you might not make it home to your family at the end of the day. NYPD Officer Jonathan Diller was the personification of that courage, and his heroism in making the ultimate sacrifice in the name of public safety will never be forgotten,” said Queens Borough President Donovan Richards. “My heart breaks for his family, friends, colleagues and the entire NYPD.”

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