Man Killed in Violent Encounter With Police in Harlem Was Son of NYPD Officer: Source

What to Know

  • A police officer was shot in the chest and a suspect was killed in an early morning shooting in Manhattan
  • The officer was wearing a bullet-resistant vest, which the bullet didn't penetrate, authorities said; he's already out of the hospital
  • The 29-year-old suspect was shot multiple times and he was later pronounced dead

The man killed in a violent encounter with police early Wednesday morning was the son of an NYPD police officer, a law enforcement source tells News 4.

The incident also resulted in a police officer being shot in the chest after encountering the armed, naked man when he responded to a disturbance call at an apartment building in Manhattan early Wednesday, authorities said.

The officer, who has not been identified, had been wearing a bullet-resistant vest, and police say that vest saved his life. No other cops were wounded.

NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill said the officer was taken to a hospital in stable condition and released later Wednesday morning. The 29-year-old suspect was shot multiple times and he was pronounced dead at a hospital. 

According to a law enforcement official, the suspect was the super of the building and his mother is an NYPD cop in the 52nd Precinct. 

Eight uniformed officers responded to a report from a resident who said a man was harassing her at her Frederick Douglass Boulevard building in Harlem, banging on doors and breaking glass around 2 a.m. Wednesday. They ascended to the second floor of the apartment and began their search for the suspect.

One of the officers then encountered a naked man, who pointed his 9mm semi-automatic pistol at him, according to O'Neill. A violent struggle ensued -- the officer, a 34-year-old cop with seven years on the force, was punched multiple times in the face -- and shots were fired, O'Neill said. It wasn't immediately clear whose shots killed the suspect and wounded the officer, but cops said the suspect's weapon was recovered at the scene. The gun case was in the staircase.

The injured cop, who is assigned to the 32nd Precinct, is married to another NYPD officer, a woman he met in the police academy, authorities said. The mayor and O'Neill met with the couple Wednesday.

"Thank God for his vest. He's alive and well," Mayor de Blasio said at St. Luke's hospital. 

The suspect, identified by a senior law enforcement official as Victor Hernandez, has had previous interactions with police related to domestic violence, O'Neill said. His most recent arrest was in 2014 for criminal contempt, the official said.

The site of the shooting is located just across the street from Police Service Area 6 and officers quickly responded to the scene. Cellphone videos posted to Citizen App NYC showed heavy police response, with several patrol cars lining the street and escorting the injured officers to the hospital.

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