An off-duty cop who shot himself in the stomach on Friday afternoon was recently told by the feds that he may be questioned as a witness in an ongoing investigation of NYPD corruption—and may have shot himself to avoid testifying against his former boss.
Lieutenant Peter Salzone shot himself several times in the stomach on Friday afternoon. According to the Daily News, the shooting occurred around 4 p.m. in his girlfriend's home in the Oakland Gardens section of Bayside.
Salzone, who has worked for the NYPD for 23 years and was the Integrity Control officer at the 19th Precinct in the Upper East Side, was rushed to North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, Long Island, where he remains in critical but stable condition.
As Integrity Control officer, Salzone was responsible for overseeing his fellow officers' actions and ensuring they weren't violating department regulations. Salzone had been appointed to the position by Deputy Inspector James Grant, who is accused of accepting favors and lavish gifts, including diamonds and money, from prominent de Blasio donors and was indicted on conspiracy and fraud charges in July. In addition to Grant, Deputy Chief Michael Harrington, Sergeant David Valenueva, and Officer Richard Ochetal have been arrested on charges that they provided gun permits to unqualified applicants in exchange for money.
In May, Inspector Michael Ameri, another high-ranking NYPD official, committed suicide inside a vehicle at the Bergen Point Golf Course in West Babylon on Long Island. According to sources, Ameri was worried after the feds went to his main office for the NYPD Highway Unit and pulled files related to the ongoing corruption probe. Ameri reportedly didn't appear to be bothered by having his name in the probe, but sources told the Daily News that "Something changed dramatically in the days after he was first mentioned on April 5."
According to the Post, the Force Investigations Division, which is investigating the shooting, is considering the possibility that Salzone was not trying to commit suicide and was instead trying to injure himself to sabotage his credibility as a witness in the investigation.
This morning, DNAinfo reported that the NYPD had placed Salzone on modified assignment, stripping him of his weapons and badge.