Motive behind killing of off-duty NYC correction officer in Brooklyn remains unclear

FLATLANDS, Brooklyn (WABC) -- The cold-blooded murder of a New York City correction officer has sent a shock wave through a Brooklyn community, all while her killer remains on the loose.

Five bullets punctured the driver's side window of 25-year-old Alastasia Bryan's car Sunday night while she was parked at East 73rd Street and Avenue L in the Flatlands section. Several of those shots struck and killed her.

Bryan was a recent graduate of the City Correction Academy and had just started working at the Anna Kross Center on Rikers Island a month ago. It not clear yet if this new job is connected with the reason she was shot.

More than 100 people honored Bryan Monday night at the spot where she was killed.

"As we are standing here tonight holding onto a mother who is grieving the loss of her daughter, earth has no sorrow that heaven cannot heal. It is humanly impossible to find in our vocabulary that would comfort her and her family at this time," said Bishop Whitaker, Corrections Officers' Chaplain.

Neighbors heard the commotion outside Sunday.

"I heard the shots, and go outside and I see the woman in the car with her head down," neighbor Ortal Kadat said.

Meanwhile, Bryan's family is grief stricken.

"Alastacia gone. There's no more Alastacia," said Mintha Bryan, the victim's aunt while shaking her head. "I don't' know what's going to happen now. Only God knows."

She was regarded as a role model by those around her.

"She always did for her family and friends. Always had a smile on her face," said Claire Yerwood, cousin of the victim.

Mayor Bill de Blasio issued a statement Monday, saying Bryan was a rising member in the Department of Correction who was "senselessly murdered."

"The NYPD is working aggressively to find the person responsible for this heinous act and will maintain its pursuit until they are brought to justice," de Blasio said.

A team of detectives picked up the case and have been canvassing homes in the area. Eyewitness News has learned they have found poor quality surveillance video and are looking for more.

Police believe a man had been waiting in a gray or beige Honda Civic nearby. As Bryan made a phone call, this man got out of the car, approached her car, shot her and then took off.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the NYPD.
Copyright © 2021 WABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.