Baltimore County Shooting Linked to Man Who Killed 2 NYPD Officers

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Ismaaiyl Brinsley
Ismaaiyl Brinsley

The man who killed two New York City police officers on Saturday afternoon is the same suspect who is believed to have shot a woman in Baltimore County earlier that morning, police said.

Ismaaiyl Abdula Brinsley, 28, killed himself following the incident, according to NYPD. Brinsley’s last known residence was in Georgia. The chain of events began early Saturday morning in Owings Mills. Brinsley allegedly shot his 29-year-old ex-girlfriend in the stomach before 6 a.m. at a home in the 10000 block of Mill Run Circle. She was in stable condition following the shooting.

Brinsley fled, but Baltimore County police found Instagram posts by Brinsley that indicated he intended to harm police officers. One of the posts attributed to Brinsley said “I’m Putting Wings on Pigs Today. They take one of ours…Let’s take 2 of theirs. #ShootthePolice #RIPErivGarner (sic) #RIPMikeBrown.”

The posts were discovered at 1:30 p.m., and police began to track Brinsley’s cell phone. About 40 minutes later, Baltimore County Police called the 70th Precinct in New York City to let police know that Brinsley was in the area, according to a statement. They also faxed a wanted poster and sent a teletype to an NYPD data center. In the end, the information did not reach police in time.

“Tragically, this was essentially at the same time as our officers were being ambushed and murdered by Brinsley,” NYPD Commissioner William Bratton said at a Saturday night news conference.

Around 3 p.m., Brinsley allegedly shot Officers Wenjin Liu and Rafael Ramos “execution-style” in their patrol car outside of a housing project in Brooklyn’s Bed-Stuy neighborhood. Police chased Brinsley to a subway station, where he took his own life.

Brinsley is not believed to have been a Baltimore resident. He was born in New York, and also has ties to Ohio and Georgia. His last known residence was in Atlanta, the New York Times reports.

President Barack Obama, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, Baltimore Mayor Stephanie-Rawlings Blake, The Rev. Al Sharpton and groups who lead protests in the wake of the Garner and Brown grand jury decisions were quick to condemn Brinsley’s actions.

“Any use of the names of Eric Garner and Michael Brown in connection with any violence or killing of police is reprehensible and against the pursuit of justice in both cases,” Sharpton said in a statement.

UPDATE 9:50 a.m. Like New York’s police union leaders did last night, Baltimore’s lodge of Fraternal Order of Police are assigning blame for the shootings to leaders who spoke out about police brutality in the wake of the Garner and Brown decisions.

In a statement, FOP Lodge #3 President Gene Ryan specifically names Obama, de Blasio and Sharpton. He states that they have “created the atmosphere of unnecessary hostility and peril that police officers now find added to the ordinary danger of their profession.”

“Sadly, the bloodshed will most likely continue until those in positions of power realize that the unequivocal support of law enforcement is required to preserve our nation,” said Ryan, whose union represents 5,000 BPD officers.

After a Baltimore police officer was shot last week, Chief Anthony Batts drew criticism after asking if the protesters would march to honor the officer.

Stephen Babcock

Stephen Babcock is the editor of Baltimore and an editor-at-large of Baltimore Fishbowl.

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