On Saturday night around 10:45, two undercover NYPD detectives shot a man to death when he brandished what appeared to be a Glock 19 semiautomatic pistol, pointing it at the officers. It turned out to be a compressed air pistol.
The two cops, 48 and 42, were in Ridgewood, Queens, in the middle of a buy and bust operation. As they were arresting a drug dealer, a 33-year-old Hispanic man named Nolan Rivera, he yelled, “They’re the cops you idiot!”
When the cops turned in the direction RIvera was yelling, they saw a 42-year-old Hispanic male emerging from a livery cab with what appeared to be a gun. The detectives, fearing for their life, both drew their own handguns and fired. One released five rounds, while the other only shot once. The man, still unidentified, was struck six times in the chest and leg. The shooting victim was then rushed to Wyckoff Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
The two detectives recovered the weapon, which turned out to be Walther C99 compressed air pistol. Rivera wasn’t shot, but he was also taken to the hospital when it was discovered that he’d swallowed crack cocaine. Rivera was charged with criminal sale of a controlled substance, tampering with physical evidence, and criminal possession of marijuana.
The deceased’s name is being withheld pending family notification, though authorities say he was arrested 39 times before, including four times in Miami-Dade County, Florida. It was the first on-duty shooting incident for the detectives, who both started in 2003.