A Yonkers detective critically wounded when he was shot in the abdomen during an undercover gun sting with federal agents in the Westchester County city a day ago has been identified as Brian Menton, the local police union president said Thursday.
Menton was hit in the abdomen and suffered serious injuries, along with extensive blood loss in the shootout at the corner of Elm and Linden streets but is expected to survive, a senior law enforcement official with knowledge of the case said.
"We're very hopeful he's going to make a full recovery, but we would ask everybody pray for him," said Yonkers Police Commissioner John Mueller.
The detective, a decorated cop with many past gun-related arrests during his years of service, had been set to retire in the coming days after 27 years with the Yonkers department, according to law enforcement sources.
Menton was working with the FBI's Westchester Safe Streets task force on a gun investigation assignment at the time of the shooting inside a deli. The plainclothes officers were without body cameras but with FBI agents when the law enforcement officers moved in to arrest three suspects as part of their ongoing investigation.
Police said one of the suspects was showing a gun to someone inside the shop. That's when the task force members arrived.
One tried to push past the Yonkers detective, sources said, but Menton pushed back. Video from inside the store showed the moment the suspect fired the gun from underneath his hoodie.
An FBI agent standing at the door then returned fire, striking the suspect, who was taken to a local hospital where he was later pronounced dead, according to Mueller. He hasn't been identified but is said to be from Georgia.
His mother was at the scene of the shooting and identified him as Bryant Jackson Adams Jr. The mother, Vanessa Jackson, said her 28-year-old son was not involved in any kind of illegal activity, and that they were visiting from the Atlanta area.
"You won't let me identify his body, nothing. You just killed my child, now you're having him sit in the morgue, telling me, 'Oh well, what do you want me to do?'" Jackson said as she demanded answers from police. "I want to see my son...I have been to Jacobi, St. John's, Yonkers General just to find out my son was laying right there at St. Joseph's Hospital."
The police commissioner said that the entire incident was captured on surveillance video, giving them "a pretty good handle on what happened and how it happened."
It's not clear if police plan to release that footage at some point. Regardless, Jackson said her son did not deserve to die.
"Whatever the case is, I’m not saying he was right or wrong, because I have no idea what happened. But I know it didn’t take a kill shot to kill my child. You could’ve wounded him," she said. "No mother should have to bury their child. The children usually bury their parents. Not me burying my child."
The two other suspects the task force was going after were charged Thursday. Bryce Martin and Xavier Sims, both from Georgia, were charged with conspiring to traffic firearms. According to prosecutors, Martin and Sims traveled up to New York with several guns to sell, and evidence recovered from their cellphones showed they had access to specialized firearms, including machine gun-style weapons.
No other officers were believed to have fired their weapons aside from the FBI agent who shot the suspected shooter. Law enforcement recovered at least four firearms — including the alleged shooter's weapon that had a chain, and a so-called "ghost gun" — from the scene.
Martin and Sims each face up to five years in prison if convicted of the federal charges.
"Gun crime is plaguing our communities, and the actions of the criminals using them are putting lives in danger. Our law enforcement partners are out doing all they can to get illegal weapons and ‘ghost guns’ off the streets before more people get killed," said U.S. Attorney Damian Williams. "The violence has to stop, and we have to hold accountable those who are breaking the law."
The FBI website describes the task forces as those that "pursue violent gangs through sustained, proactive, coordinated investigations to obtain prosecutions on violations such as racketeering, drug conspiracy, and firearms violations."
Following the incident, the FBI issued a statement saying: "Earlier today, members of our Westchester County Safe Streets task force were involved in a shooting incident in Yonkers, NY. As this is an ongoing investigation, we have no further information to provide at this time."
It is not the first time at the bodega where the shooting occurred has been the setting for violence.
Three suspects, one as young as 17, were arrested and charged last year in connection to a daytime drive-by shooting in June 2021, after authorities said someone inside a car opened fire at the same intersection. That shooting left three men and a woman shot, but all survived.