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Police suspend two officers for ‘failure to take appropriate action’ in Williamsburg ax attack

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The NYPD suspended two cops for the way they responded to the crime scene of a recent ax rampage in Williamsburg Tuesday, according to the authorities.

The department suspended the two officers from the 83rd Precinct without pay for not responding appropriately to the killing of Savannah Rivera, 20, and the attempted murder of her 21-year-old friend at a Flushing Avenue apartment on the night of April 20, according to a spokeswoman for the department.

“The Brooklyn North Investigations Unit has reviewed the response and actions of two officers from the 83rd Precinct in this incident, and both are in the process of being suspended for failure to take appropriate action,” Detective Sophia Mason said in a statement emailed to this paper. “The two officers are currently suspended without pay.”

Jerry Brown allegedly hacked Rivera to death with an ax and seriously injured her friend at his eighth-floor apartment at Humboldt Street, all while the surviving woman’s 4-year-old daughter — who was unharmed in the attack — was left in a nearby bedroom.

Emergency personnel were the first on the scene and brought the surviving woman —whom they found lying with lacerations all over her body outside the apartment building — to a Queens hospital around 1:30 a.m., according to the police.

When the two officers showed up, paramedics reportedly relayed to the them that the injured woman told the emergency service personnel that Rivera was likely dead in the apartment and that her own daughter was still upstairs, begging them to save the child, law enforcement sources told WNBC.

The cops then reportedly requested backup and mentioned an “assault from the past” with a possible knife, but failed to mention the child, the ax, or the dead woman at the scene.

When their supervisor arrived they didn’t share the information either and, instead of going to the eighth-floor apartment, stayed at the entrance for almost an hour, leaving the child and Rivera alone for that time, the sources told the broadcaster.

The officers reportedly gave “partial information” to other police before leaving the scene without investigating and clearing the scene or notifying a supervisor, another source reportedly told WNBC.

The department’s communications unit did not have any more details about the two officers’ behavior and couldn’t confirm the reports to this paper by press time, according to Mason.

Police arrested Brown the day of the incident and charged him with murder, attempted murder, and criminal possession of a weapon.

He is currently undergoing a psychiatric evaluation at a hospital, according to the spokeswoman.

Representatives for the police union — the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association — didn’t respond to multiple requests for comment by press time.

Reach reporter Kevin Duggan at (718) 260–2511 or by e-mail at kduggan@cnglocal.com. Follow him on Twitter @kduggan16.
Updated 12:17 pm, April 24, 2019
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