Police found the body of a 66-year-old man in the basement of his Brooklyn home on Monday night, shocking neighbors on the leafy Prospect Park South street. "It's appalling. It's a lovely looking neighborhood and it's a great place to live. But this is New York City and you just can't drop your guard," one told NBC New York.
It's believed that Jeremy Safran, a professor of psychology at the New School, was killed during a home invasion. After searching the basement, officers found a 28-year-old man in a closet and took him into custody.
According to police, they responded to a 911 call just before 6 p.m. about a burglary in progress at 155 Stratford Road and found Safran, unconscious and unresponsive with trauma to the head and body, in the basement. EMS pronounced him dead at the scene.
The Post reports, "The 28-year-old suspect is believed to have followed Safran’s daughter to the location, where he briefly spoke to her in an apparent effort to case the home, sources said. A neighbor later spotted him break in and called the daughter — who at the same time heard the sounds of violence coming from downstairs."
The suspect broke into the home through a basement window, per WCBS 2, which adds that that he was found with a hammer. The suspect was taken into custody and charges are pending.
Safran's colleagues and peers are mourning his loss:
It is with a sad and shocked heart that I share with you that one of our most caring and influential colleagues, Jeremy Safran,is no longer with us. https://t.co/fi31AHmhWz
— Kristin Osborn (@KristinOsborn) May 8, 2018
The New School releases statement on the death of Dr. Jeremy Safran. He was killed at his home in Brooklyn late afternoon yesterday during a burglary. @TheNewSchool @Telemundo47 #Brooklyn #NewSchool pic.twitter.com/utwZ3K9PrQ
— Cristian Benavides (@cbenavidesT47) May 8, 2018
So sad to learn this tragic news. Jeremy Safran’s cross-theoretical work has been paramount to psychotherapy research and practice and extremely influential to my thinking, research, and practice. https://t.co/KcpaLZ9tZV
— Stevie N. Grassetti (@StevieGrassetti) May 8, 2018
Another neighbor saw Safran in the morning, telling the Daily News, "[H]e was coming out of the car like he was coming from the supermarket. It's shocking because we've been here for 24 years. ... You become so complacent you don't think about something like this."