Jurors found a Queens Village man guilty on Thursday of fatally shooting a New York City police officer from Massapequa during a traffic stop two years ago.
Demetrius Blackwell, 37, shot Police Officer Brian Moore as he and his partner, Police Officer Erik Jansen, approached him in their unmarked police cruiser on the night of May 2, 2015. Moore was struck in the head and died two days later at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center.
“The evidence of [Blackwell’s] guilt presented at trial was truly overwhelming,” Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. “The jury fairly weighed all the evidence offered by both sides before concluding — unanimously and beyond a reasonable doubt — that the defendant deliberately fired a weapon at the two police officers without provocation or warning, killing one of them.”
On Nov. 9, a jury returned a guilty verdict against Blackwell on charges including first-degree murder, first-degree attempted murder and criminal possession of a weapon. Jurors only spent two hours over two days deliberating before reaching their verdict.
Queens Supreme Court Justice Gregory Lasak is scheduled to sentence Blackwell on Dec. 12. It’s very likely that Blackwell will serve life in prison without parole.
Law enforcement sources said Moore and Jansen approached Blackwell on patrol at around 6:15 p.m. on May 2, 2015. They had seen him adjusting his waistband.
When they went to question him, authorities said, Blackwell pulled out a handgun and started firing. Moore was hit twice in the head, while Jansen managed to avoid being injured.
Police located Blackwell hours later after conducting a massive search of the neighborhood.
“The murder of Detective Brian Moore reminds us of the extraordinary danger police officers face every day, protecting this city,” NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill said. “Brian chose this profession to protect others, to do good, and to serve a cause greater than himself. He was murdered doing his job and in defense of every New Yorker.”