AWFUL

NYPD Detective Shot Dead in Queens

An NYPD detective is believed to have been killed by friendly fire on Tuesday evening while confronting a robbery suspect in Queens along with fellow officers, authorities said. On-duty Det. Brian Simonsen, 42, who had 19 years on the job and was part of the 102nd precinct detective squad, was killed in the crossfire when officers responding to the scene shot the suspect multiple times. “This appears to be an absolutely tragic case of friendly fire," NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill told reporters at a late-night press conference. “Friendly fire aside, it’s because of the actions of the suspect that Det. Simonsen is dead.” An NYPD sergeant with eight and a half years on the force was also shot but was in stable condition late Tuesday, O'Neill said. The shootout that left Simonsen dead happened after he and the sergeant responded to a robbery in progress at a T-Mobile store, where several other police officers soon arrived to confront a suspect who was believed to be armed. The officers fired when they saw the suspect coming towards them, and Simonsen was struck. The suspect was also shot during the chaos and was later taken into custody. Police said a fake gun was recovered at the scene.