Queens-Nassau border, New York– Darrell Fuller, 33, the alleged gunman who shot and killed a Nassau County police officer during a traffic stop Tuesday on the border between Queens and Nassau Counties has been captured in Queens, law enforcement authorities said. Fuller allegedly shot a second person who was also fatally killed in the confrontation on the Cross Island Parkway at Jamaica Avenue, near the Belmont Park racetrack.
Connect with NYTMetro
The violence erupted shortly after 11 a.m. after the police officer stopped a car at the entrance ramp to the parkway, just a few feet outside the Queens border, a law enforcement official said, adding that the car had been stopped because it had left the scene of an accident.
Fuller was found in a parked car near 175th Street and 111th Avenue in St. Albans and appeared to have two gunshot wounds, sources said. He’s been taken to Jamaica Hospital.
It’s unclear how he was shot. A 911 call alerted police officers to his location, though it’s not clear who made the call.
Police had been hunting the suspect after he allegedly shot Officer Arthur Lopez, 29, during a traffic stop before gunning down a motorist as he tried to get away along the border of Queens and Long Island.
Authorities said Lopez and another Nassau officer were heading north on Northern Boulevard when they saw a vehicle leave the scene of an accident near the Queens border.
They pulled over the suspect, who was driving a Honda, and he began firing at them after a short conversation, killing Lopez, law enforcement officials said. Lopez was not wearing a bulletproof vest; the other officer was not shot.
The suspect took off, ditching the car before carjacking a Toyota and shooting its driver in the head.
That Toyota was later found abandoned. Police identified 33-year-old Fuller as the suspect by tracing the registration on the Honda, sources tell NBC 4 New York.
A man who said he witnessed the shooting while he was stopped at a gas station along the highway said it happened during what looked like a routine traffic stop.
“The officer’s walking up to the car. They just pulled out and shot,” said Paul Walcott, a music producer from Bayside, Queens. “He went right down. He got hit point blank. He went straight down.”
Nearby schools were put on lockdown while police searched for the suspect, Department of Education officials said. Residents were also told to stay in their homes while police went from house to house.
It was the second time in the past week that a Nassau County officer has died in the line of duty. Highway patrolman Joseph Olivieri was killed Thursday while responding to a traffic accident caused by an alleged drunk driver.
Lopez was an eight-year veteran of the department and was a volunteer firefighter on Long Island.
Nassau County PBA President James Carter described him as “full of life, full of energy, a great cop and a great friend.”
Fuller has two prior arrests: one in October 2004 for attempted murder and another in March 2010 for possession of drugs, according to law enforcement sources.
He was sentenced to five years in prison after pleading guilty to the attempted murder charge and is currently on parole, sources said.