Slain NYPD Det. Brian Moore was remembered for his bravery and diligent police work at a somber memorial service Wednesday, marking one year since he died after being shot in the line of duty.
Heavy rain fell throughout the afternoon service held under a black tent on the Queens Village street where Moore, a 25-year-old Plainedge resident, was shot in the head by an assailant while on patrol with his partner May 2, 2015. Moore died two days later.
“He represented the best of the finest,” said Police Commissioner William Bratton. “He had the gift, the gift of the eye as we call it . . . that as policemen we all wished we possessed. That distinct ability to spot the danger, to spot the trouble and to move, and move towards it. Today, we celebrate that bravery.”
Moore’s parents — Irene Moore and retired NYPD Sgt. Raymond Moore — spoke briefly at the memorial, which was punctuated by prayer, the singing of the national anthem and the solemn sounds of bagpipes.
“Each day without him, it’s really tough — especially today,” Raymond Moore said, calling his son a “fallen hero.”
The father, in a dark suit, with a blue ribbon on his lapel in honor of his son, continued: “With this turnout today, in this terrible weather, I know Brian would be very proud of his co-workers and the community that he protected so diligently. Let’s all try to aspire to be more like Brian, and be the courageous hero that he was.”
Demetrius Blackwell, 35, of Queens Village, was charged last year in Moore’s slaying. He pleaded not guilty to a 12-count indictment of charges including aggravated murder and first- and second-degree murder. The case is pending.
Queens District Attorney Richard Brown, whose office is prosecuting Blackwell, said after the service that he was not sure when the case would go to trial. But he repeated that there would be no plea deal.
“At this point, there’s just a lot of work that needs to be done before trial,” Brown said.
Since Moore’s death, officials in his tight-knit Plainedge community, in which he was a lifelong resident, have honored his memory by launching a scholarship in his name and, later this month, renaming a community park in his honor. A bronze statue in his likeness also will be erected at the park. A Queens street also was named after him.
Chief of Department James O’Neill and Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association President Patrick Lynch also attended the anniversary memorial. More than 100 officers from the 105th Precinct, where the detective was assigned to an anti-crime unit, stood in formation throughout the service as the rain pelted them.
“He was a true crime-fighter through and through,” said Insp. Michael Coyle, who was the commanding officer of the 105th Precinct at the time of the killing.
Coyle and the current commanding officer together laid a flowered wreath at the spot where Moore was gunned down.
After addressing mourners, Moore’s mother stood for several minutes in front of the wreath, quietly reflecting.
“The loss is beyond a tragedy, it is something that is felt by all of us each and every day,” the grieving mother said.