NBC 4 New York
The trial has begun for Lamont Pride, accused of shooting Officer Peter Figoski in the face in 2011; the officer died at the hospital hours later. Tracie Strahan reports.
Because of worsening weather conditions Friday, a judge dismissed jurors for the day in the trial of a man accused of shooting an NYPD officer during a botched robbery.
The jurors, who have begun deliberating, will return to the Brooklyn courtroom on Monday.
Lamont Pride has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder in the death of Officer Peter Figoski. Prosecutors say Pride and four others plotted to rob a drug dealer who lived in a basement apartment in Brooklyn, but they were interrupted by police.
Figoski, a 22-year veteran of the NYPD and father of four daughters, confronted Pride outside of the residence in East New York in December 2011. Pride is accused of shooting Figoski in the face; the officer died at the hospital hours later.
Pride's lawyer says he didn't intentionally shoot the officer.
In video recordings obtained by NBC New York's I-Team last year, Pride said he fell down while trying to escape and the gun accidentally went off.
"By the time I look up and clutch my hands to run, he's coming. I'm going. So it was like, 'Boom,'" Pride said in a videotaped statement. "I want to come forward, come clean and honest, so that way when the time do come, I can get some type of leniency."
One of the five suspects arrested in connection with the case agreed to testify against the others in exchange for less prison time.
Pride faces life in prison without the possibility of parole if convicted of the top charge against him. He was arrested by Figoski's partner, Glenn Estrada, who had been struggling with another suspect but started running after Pride when he heard the gunshot.
Pride had previous arrests in New York on drug charges. He was also wanted in North Carolina in connection with a shooting at the time of Figoski's death.
The trial of the accused getaway driver, Michael Velez, began Thursday.