The New York Attorney General's Office of Special Investigation has opened a probe into the death of Jamie Liang, the 24-year-old woman who was allegedly shot and killed by an off-duty NYPD officer who caught her with her ex-girlfriend this week.
The officer, 31-year-old Yvonne Wu, has been charged with murdering Liang and attempting to murder her ex-girlfriend, who was shot in the torso Wednesday night. The ex-girlfriend, 23, remained hospitalized in critical condition late Thursday.
The attorney general's office said Friday that preliminary information suggests the deadly shooting may have been the result of a personal or domestic incident without connection to Wu's law enforcement duties. She works midnights and had last reported for duty Tuesday night. She was supposed to be back Wednesday.
It's not clear if the gun allegedly used to kill Liang was Wu's service weapon.
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According to state law, the attorney general's Office of Special Investigation (OSI) reviews every incident where a police or peace officer, including a corrections officer, may have caused the death of a person by an act or by omission. That law applies whether the officer was on- or off-duty at the time of the incident.
If OSI's review finds an officer did cause the death of another person, the office proceeds to conduct a full investigation of the incident. That's in addition to any criminal case that may develop against the officer accused. In this case, the latter is already in progress, though a first court date for Wu wasn't immediately clear.
Information on a possible attorney for Wu wasn't known, either.
The crimes the 31-year-old patrol cop is accused of committing were described as "coming out of left field" by one senior NYPD official who told News 4 earlier this week the officer's annual evaluations exceeded expectations. There had been no prior signs of trouble involving her until Wednesday's shooting, the official said.
Cops responding to 911 calls at the ex-girlfriend's home on 19th Avenue found Wu outside. Her ex-girlfriend had been shot in the bedroom and Liang was found shot in the chest in the living room. She was pronounced dead at a hospital.
Authorities say Wu confessed at the scene; investigators described her as calm and forthcoming with the information. Neighbors who saw her speaking to police described Wu as shockingly "deadpan, no anxiety" as she talked after the shooting.
Liang was also a dental student with a bright future, friends said Thursday. Her family had recently moved to a Staten Island neighborhood. Relatives declined to speak with News 4 about the case.