NEW YORK (AP) — A shooting in a Harlem apartment that killed an NYPD officer and left another critically wounded is a call to action to get illegal guns off the streets, Gov. Kathy Hochul said Saturday.
The two officers were shot Friday night while answering a call about an argument between a woman and her adult son. Officer Jason Rivera, 22, was killed, and Officer Wilbert Mora, 27, was critically wounded, authorities said.
The man who shot them with a stolen gun was also in critical condition, wounded by a third officer who fired at him as he tried to flee, officials said.
Hochul said at an appearance in Buffalo that the shooting points to the need for Washington to work with state and local government to tackle “the scourge of illegal guns on our streets.”
“Despite our tough laws here in the state of New York — we’re proud of them — they’re coming in from other states,” Hochul said. “They’re flooding our streets.”
Mayor Eric Adams on Friday night similarly called for federal authorities to do more to round up stolen guns like the one used in the Harlem shooting.
Police said the gun used in Friday night’s shooting, a .45-caliber Glock with a high-capacity magazine capable of holding up to 40 extra rounds, had been stolen in Baltimore in 2017.
Police had no update on Mora’s condition Saturday morning but said he remained hospitalized. The man police say shot them, 47-year-old Lashawn J. McNeil, also was critically wounded and hospitalized, authorities said.
Authorities said the three officers went to the apartment after a call came in from a woman needing help with McNeil, her son. Officers spoke with the woman and another son, but there was no mention of a weapon.
Rivera and Mora walked from the front of the apartment down a hallway, and McNeil swung open a bedroom door and opened fire, Chief of Detectives James Essig said.
As McNeil tried to flee, a third officer who had stayed with McNeil’s mother in the front of the apartment shot at McNeil and wounded him in the head and arm, Essig said.
They were among the four officers shot in the city in as many days, prompting an emotional response from Mayor Eric Adams.
“This was just not an attack on these brave officers,” Adams said Friday night. “This was an attack on the city of New York.”
Rivera joined the force in November 2020. Mora has been with the NYPD for four years.
Adams, three weeks into his job, called for federal authorities to do more to round up stolen guns like the one used in Friday’s shooting.
McNeil was on probation for a 2003 drug conviction in New York City. He also had several out-of-state arrests. In 1998, he was arrested in South Carolina on suspicion of unlawfully carrying a pistol, but records show the matter was later dismissed. In 2002, he was arrested in Pennsylvania on suspicion of assaulting a police officer, Essig said.