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Off-Duty NYPD Officer Leaving Father's Day BBQ Shot in Struggle With Domestic Violence Suspect: Cops

The officer was responding to a child's cries for help

Monday, Jun 17, 2013  |  Updated 8:35 PM EDT
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New information in the case of an off-duty officer shot in Queens, who was called into action by an 11-year-old boy who said someone was trying to kill his mom. Now we're learning of the special encounter between that boy and the man he calls his hero. Erika Tarantal has more.

NBC 4 New York

New information in the case of an off-duty officer shot in Queens, who was called into action by an 11-year-old boy who said someone was trying to kill his mom. Now we're learning of the special encounter between that boy and the man he calls his hero. Erika Tarantal has more.

An off-duty police officer and father of three who heard a little boy cry for help as he was leaving a party in Queens late Sunday was shot in the hand when he confronted the domestic violence suspect who was allegedly assaulting the child's mother, police and relatives said.

The domestic violence suspect was also wounded in a struggle for the officer's gun, police said. 

Police say officer Joseph Koch was leaving a Father's Day barbecue in Jamaica when an 11-year-old boy ran out of a nearby home, shouting for help. The boy said his mother was being assaulted.

Koch entered the home with his gun drawn. Police say the 40-year-old suspect attacked the officer and a struggle for the weapon ensued. Three shots were fired.

The officer was hit in the hand; the suspect was hit in the abdomen. Both were taken to the hospital in stable condition. A relative said one of Koch's fingers was in particularly "bad shape" and doctors were trying to save it. 

The domestic violence victim was treated for a cut to her head. She was also listed in stable condition. No other injuries were reported. 

Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said police had been called to the victim's house for domestic violence reports in the past.

The suspect was arrested Monday and charged with multiple counts, including assault, aggravated harassment, burglary, endangering the welfare of a child and resisting arrest.

Koch is planning to get married in November, his soon-to-be father-in-law said. He has three daughters.

-Lori Bordonaro contributed to this report

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