Suspect who killed NYPD Officer Jonathan Diller has 21 prior arrests: police

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Wednesday, March 27, 2024
Suspect who shot NYPD officer had series of arrests prior to incident
Lucy Yang is in Far Rockaway with more on the deadly shooting of NYPD Officer Jonathan Diller.

FAR ROCKAWAY, Queens (WABC) -- A community in Queens, the NYPD, and a young family are all mourning the loss of Officer Jonathan Diller, who was fatally shot during a traffic stop in Queens.

Diller, 31, who lived in Massapequa Park with his wife Stephanie and nearly 1-year-old son, joined the NYPD in February 2021.

Authorities say Diller and another officer were conducting the traffic stop on Mott Avenue at around 5:45 p.m. Monday. The NYPD Critical Response Team has been focusing on cars with fake plates, illegal tints or other quality-of-life issues.

NYPD officials say the officers stopped the vehicle, which had two men inside, because it was parked at a bus stop illegally. Investigators believe they were casing a nearby T-Mobile store.

When officers asked the individuals to step out of the vehicle, the suspect in the passenger's seat refused, and pointed a gun at the officers.

I cannot say it any clearer: it is the good guys against the bad guys.
Mayor Eric Adams

Guy Rivera, 34, is accused of shooting Diller, who was struck in the torso, just below his bullet-resistant vest. Officials say Diller's partner then fired at Rivera, striking him in the back.

Diller was rushed to Jamaica Hospital in critical condition and later died.

His remains were moved from Jamaica Hospital just after 11:30 p.m. Monday night to be taken to the medical examiner's office. Hundreds of officers stood at attention, along with Diller's family, accompanied by Police Commissioner Edward Caban, as they stood crying nearby.

Shannon Sohn was in NewsCopter 7 following the dignified transfer of Officer Diller to a funeral home in Massapequa Tuesday night.

Shannon Sohn was live in NewsCopter 7 covering the dignified transfer of NYPD Officer Jonathan Diller, who was transferred to a funeral home on Long Island.

As for the second officer, he was taken to the hospital with tinnitus.

The other suspect has been identified as 41-year-old Lindy Jones. A gun was recovered at the scene.

One of the men is at Jamaica Hospital, while the other is at a police precinct. No official charges have been announced.

Records show Rivera has been arrested by the NYPD 21 times -- nine of them felonies. He was released from prison in September 2021 after serving nearly five years for criminal sale of a controlled substance. He previously spent three years in state prison for a 2011 assault and was released in October 2014.

Jones has 14 prior arrests. He was arrested for second-degree criminal possession of a weapon for having a loaded firearm in Far Rockaway on April 17, 2023. He was out on $75,000 bail. He previously served 10 years in prison on 2003 attempted murder and robbery charges and was released in November 2013.

The heavy rap sheets for both men left Mayor Eric Adams outraged and called this incident a recidivist problem.

"Same bad people, doing bad things to good people, less than a year, he's back on the streets with another gun," Adams said. "The person had a total disregard for the safety of this city. I cannot say it any clearer: it is the good guys against the bad guys. And these bad guys are violent. They carry guns. And the symbol of our public safety, which is that police uniform, they have a total disregard for."

Adams said the deadly shooting of Officer Diller is "extremely painful for this city."

"There will be plenty of time for anger, grief and for processing pain, but right now, our prayers are with our fallen officer's family, his fellow cops and every member of the New York City Police Department, but most of all, they're with the officer himself," Caban said.

Governor Kathy Hochul released a statement in response to the "'senseless" killing.

"My prayers are with his family, loved ones and the members of the NYPD," said Hochul. "His heroism and service will never be forgotten."

This is the first NYPD officer killed in the line of duty since 2022, when officers Wilbert Mora and Jason Rivera were fatally shot in a Harlem apartment building after responding to a domestic disturbance call.

A wake for Diller will be held Thursday and Friday at Massapequa Funeral Home while a funeral is set for Saturday at St. Rose of Lima R.C. Church.

Mayor Adams provides an update after the fatal shooting of an NYPD officer in Queens Monday night.


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