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Slain NYPD cop from LI gets Medal of Honor

New York City Police Officer Peter Figoski was

New York City Police Officer Peter Figoski was fatally shot in Brooklyn while responding to a robbery. (Dec. 12, 2011) Credit: NYPD

NYPD Det. Peter Figoski, slain last December while trying to break up a bungled robbery in Brooklyn, will be posthumously awarded Tuesday the department's Medal of Honor, the highest award that can be given to a city police officer.

Figoski's relatives from his hometown of Babylon, including his daughters, are expected to attend the Medal Day ceremony at police headquarters over which Commissioner Ray Kelly and Mayor Michael Bloomberg will preside. Figoski's father, Frank, will accept the award on his behalf, a police spokesman said.

A unit citation also will go to the controversial intelligence division for its role in breaking up two suspected terror plots against the city last year.

Figoski was shot dead when he and his partner confronted suspects at a building in East New York which was believed to be a drug den, police said. Lamont Pride was charged with killing Figoski and is awaiting trial.

The medal being awarded Tuesday is the second time Figoski has been recognized after his death. He was posthumously promoted to detective.

Twelve officers who died as a result of illnesses suffered while they were doing recovery work at Ground Zero also will be posthumously awarded the department's Distinguished Service Medal.

The intelligence division is receiving a unit citation to recognize its role in the arrest last year of bombing plot suspects Jose Pimentel in November, and Ahmed Ferhani and Mohamed Mamdouh in May 2011. State prosecutions against all three are pending.

The unit has been the subject of controversy over surveillance and information-gathering in the Muslim community.

Some Muslims believe the intelligence operation was unlawful and have filed a federal lawsuit in New Jersey. But the NYPD maintains the activity has been consistent with a federal court ruling that in 2002 loosened restrictions on intelligence-gathering in the wake of Sept. 11, 2001.

Twelve officers are slated to receive Combat Cross awards for gunfights with suspects in the line of duty.

Another 15 will receive medals for valor in confrontations with suspects that didn't involve the use of firearms, police spokesman Paul Browne said.

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