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Thousands bid farewell to murdered New York officer


murdered New York officerThousands of mourners gathered in a Long Island town Friday to bid farewell to a New York police officer who was shot in the head by an alleged career criminal.

Brian Moore, 25, was the third New York officer killed in America’s biggest city since December against a backdrop of nationwide protests and racial tensions over police killings of unarmed black suspects.

Moore, who was in plainclothes, was shot in the head while inside his unmarked car with another police officer in the borough of Queens last Saturday. Moore died in hospital two days later.

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio and police commissioner Bill Bratton were to lead the mourners at the funeral at St James Church in the town of Seaford, 40 miles (64 kilometers) east of Manhattan.

“It’s awful, frightening reminder of the sacrifice that so many men and women in law enforcement make. More and more it’s obvious the danger of the job,” New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said Friday.

Demetrius Blackwell, 35, an ex-convict and a career criminal, was arrested shortly after the shooting and faces murder charges over Moore’s death.

He allegedly opened fire on the officers as they tried to follow him.

On December 20, New York officers Wenjian Liu, 32, and Rafael Ramos, 40, were shot dead as they sat in their patrol car by a black gunman claiming to be avenging the deaths of African-Americans at the hands of police.

The US Department of Justice on Friday opened an investigation into whether police in the city of Baltimore engaged in systematic misconduct and excessive force, following the eruption of violent riots.

Six police officers have been charged in connection with the arrest and death of 25-year-old Freddie Gray, who suffered a serious spinal injury while in the back of a police van last month and died a week later.

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