It is always sad when an officer loses his or her life in the line of duty, but that is especially true in cases like this one.
While responding to a robbery call, New York Police Department Detective Brian Simonsen was struck by friendly fire from his fellow officers, and later died from his wounds.
The radio call that went out made it quite clear that the moments that led up to Simonsen’s death were terrifying and frantic.
A 911 call came in that someone had been spotted at a T-Mobile store taking employees into a back room at gunpoint. Det. Simonsen and his partner, Sgt. Matthew Gorman, were close by and responded.
They arrived at the scene roughly at the time of other responding officers. Suddenly, a man emerged at the rear of the store, pointing what the officers thought was a weapon at them.
The officers immediately opened fire, with stray shots hitting both Simonsen and Gorman.
Det. Simonsen was rushed to the hospital, but soon after pronounced dead.
Witnesses said they heard close to two dozen shots fired. But when the dust finally settled, it was revealed that the suspect, who had an “extensive” criminal record, was actually holding a replica weapon.
The frustration from his fellow officers was very apparent after the incident occurred.
“Make no mistake about it, friendly fire aside, it is because of the actions of the suspect that Det. Simonsen is dead,” NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill said.
The question was then brought up as to why this man was even on the street in the first place.
“I think we have to ask the question: Why was someone with such an extensive arrest record out on the street and not incarcerated?” Detectives’ Endowment Association President Michael Palladino asked.
But Palladino need look no further than the liberal policies of his mayor, senator, and congressmen for that answer.
Rest in peace, Det. Simonsen.