By Maria Rocha-Buschel
The Gramercy Park Block Association honored slain police officer Brian Moore at the annual gala last Thursday held at the National Arts Club, which was attended by cops from the 13th Precinct, Emergency Service Unit Truck 1, 71st precinct in Brooklyn and Moore’s precinct in Queens.
GPBA president Arlene Harrison usually takes the opportunity at the event to recognize the officers of the 13th Precinct at the yearly event, emphasizing the community’s close relationship with the NYPD, and this year she paid a particular tribute to Moore.
Members of the anti-crime team at the 105th precinct, police officers Christopher D’Antonio, Jason Roemer and Nicholas Demeo, as well as Moore’s partner Officer Erik Jansen, were also in attendance.
Detective Nancy Yule, who has been with the NYPD for 33 years and on the Detective Squad for Manhattan for the last 12, has worked with Harrison in the past, since the office for the Manhattan detectives is inside the 13th precinct.
“She really outdid herself with this,” Yule said of the gathering, referring to the number of members of the NYPD at the event.
Members of the Emergency Service Unit put together a slideshow to commemorate the 25-year-old officer. Moore died from his wounds two days after he was shot. Career criminal Demetrius Blackwell, 35, was charged with first degree murder not long after the officer’s death.
On Saturday, May 2 around 6 p.m., Moore was with his partner in an unmarked police vehicle when they pulled up behind Blackwell because they thought he was adjusting something in his waistband. The officers were in plainclothes but reportedly identified themselves and asked Blackwell if he had something in his waistband. He responded that he did then allegedly pulled out the gun and fired at the car, hitting Moore in the cheek. He was arrested an hour and a half after the incident.
Harrison thanked the officers at the gala for their service and said that the community appreciates the sacrifices that they make.
“We want you to know that every day you come to work and put your lives on the line to keep us safe, you are our heroes,” she said. “We can think of no other job where you wear bulletproof vests and your families wonder whether you are coming home at night. We want to thank you, applaud you, and tell you that you will always be our heroes.”