A New York Police Department officer with over six years of service was shot dead in the Bronx early Sunday, authorities said.
Brian Mulkeen, a 33-year-old member of The Bronx Anti-Crime Unit, was investigating gang activity, including recent shootings with two other officers at about 12:30 a.m. Sunday, NYPD said.
The officers got out of their vehicle to question a man, who then fled, and the officers gave chase. As the officers tried to apprehend the suspect, a violent struggle on the ground began, NYPD Chief of Department Terence Monahan said.
In body-worn camera, Mulkeen can be heard yelling “He’s reaching for it. He’s reaching for it,” Monahan said.
Multiple shots were fired and Mulkeen was shot three times. He was pronounced dead at a hospital soon after.
Five officers at the scene fired their weapons, striking and killing the suspect. The 27-year-old was on probation for a narcotics-related arrest last year and had several prior arrests, including a burglary in Rockland County, Monahan said.
A firearm believed to be the suspect’s was recovered at the scene, NYPD said. Monahan said it appeared that gun was not fired, but Mulkeen’s gun was fired five times.
“At this point, we are not sure who fired Officer Mulkeen’s gun,” he said.
Mulkeen had served on the NYPD for over six and a half years and lived in Yorktown Heights with his girlfriend, who is also an NYPD officer.
“As we stand here this morning, a young man with a bright future who courageously patrolled some of New York City’s toughest streets has tragically lost his life,” Monahan said. “Brian was a great cop dedicated to keeping this city safe.”
“There is no worse a moment in our profession than this,” NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill tweeted. “Please keep Brian’s family & colleagues in your thoughts.”
Mulkeen is the second NYPD officer to be shot and killed on the street this year. In February, an NYPD detective was fatally shot in a friendly fire incident as police responded to a reported robbery in Queens. The suspect had a replica handgun, police said.
In addition, nine NYPD officers have died by suicide this year, a cluster that has rattled the department.
Sunday’s killing comes more than a day after a gunman shot dead Texas Deputy Sandeep Dhaliwal, an observant Sikh who gained national attention years ago when he got permission to wear a turban as part of his Harris County Sheriff’s Office uniform.
Dhaliwal had stopped a man for a traffic violation and was walking back to his patrol car Friday afternoon when he was shot twice, including at least once in the back of the head, authorities said.
Mulkeen graduated from Fordham in 2008 and was a two-year field captain for the track and field team, competing in weight throw and hammer throw, the university said.