MTA police officers trying to arrest a man for allegedly groping a woman in Queens was shot and killed late Friday in an exchange of gunfire, according to law enforcement officials.
The man reportedly assaulted a 19-year-old woman, who reported it to MTA officers near Jamaica Station around 10 p.m. MTA Chief of Police John Mueller said the woman told officers a stranger groped her and showed a photo of him that she managed to take.
Officers found him almost immediately near the Queens station. The 52-year-old suspect, not yet identified by authorities, refused arrest and struggled with the two MTA cops, Mueller said. The cops Tased the man before the struggle escalated to deadly force.
“At some point during the struggle, a shot is fired from the perpetrator, who is now deceased,” the chief explained.
Both officers fired at the man, striking him in the head and throughout his body. He was taken to Jamaica Hospital where staff pronounced him dead, officials said.
MTA officials said a MAC-10 submachine gun, “commonly referred to as an Uzi,” was recovered from underneath the suspect’s body after he was removed from the scene. A 30-round ammunition clip was also picked up.
The involved officers were not physically hurt in the exchange, but were taken to a local hospital for “trauma.”
According to Mueller, the 52-year-old was on parole for a gun charge and had 12 previous arrests.
The MTA said Saturday’s deadly shooting was the third in the department’s history.