EAST HARLEM, Manhattan — The Rev. Al Sharpton led a prayer vigil early Saturday afternoon in East Harlem for fallen Officer Randolph Holder.
Members of Sharpton’s National Action Network and heartbroken members of the community Holder served, came together at a growing shrine of flowers, pictures, notes and candles outside Police Service Area 5.
Rev. Sharpton, who has often been critical of the NYPD, heaped praise on the slain 33-year-old officer.
“Randolph Holder’s killing was a blow to all of us and we who unapologetically fight bad policing, are unapologetically supporting good police. And his loss is a loss to all of us,” said Sharpton.
The five year decorated officer was responding to a call of shots fired when he was shot in the head on the FDR Drive Tuesday night. Tyrone Howard, 30, has been charged with his murder.
Howard has a criminal history of nearly two dozen arrests, including one for a 2009 shooting. At one point a judge put him in a drug diversion program instead sending him to prison, and he later wound up on the streets a free man.
Mayor de Blasio and Rev. Sharpton are among those calling for reforms to how New York State judges offer alternatives to incarceration.
“Obviously this death is going to spark a lot of conversation. It’s going to open a floodgate for some of our existing laws, some of the loopholes we have as a state, and things that we can do to prevent things from happening down the line,” said City Council member
Vanessa Gibson, chair of the council’s public safety committee.