A second NYPD officer has died from wounds sustained during an ambush shooting in Harlem on Friday night, police said.
Wilbert Mora, a 27-year-old patrol officer, died Tuesday afternoon, NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell announced in a tweet.
“Wilbert is 3 times a hero,” Sewell wrote. “For choosing a life of service. For sacrificing his life to protect others. For giving life even in death through organ donation. Our heads are bowed & our hearts are heavy.”
Mora was shot in the head on Friday in a hail of bullets that also killed his partner, 22-year-old Jason Rivera. He was kept on life support for four days following the shooting so his organs could be transferred to others, a police official confirmed to WNYC/Gothamist.
Dubbed an “attack on New York City” by Mayor Eric Adams, the shooting touched off an outpouring of grief in Harlem and within the city’s police department, which has already experienced a spate of shootings this year.
The incident marked the first time that two NYPD officers were killed in the line of duty since the ambush killing of Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu at point blank range in 2014.
The fatal shooting came as Mora, Rivera,and a third trainee officer were responding to a call from a woman who said she was having an argument with her adult son at their home on 135th Street near Lenox Avenue.
As they walked a narrow hallway in the apartment, the son, LaShawn McNeil, emerged from his bedroom and "suddenly, without warning, opened fire on them,” Sewell said last week.
The third officer at the scene then fired his gun at the 47-year-old, striking him in the head and the arm as he attempted to flee, police said. McNeil was also pronounced dead on Monday.
In a note to staff, John Jay Professor Irina Zakirova recalled teaching Mora’s capstone class in 2018, the same year he joined the NYPD. She described him as a “curious and passionate student with a great personality,” who wrote his final paper on the effects of Stop and Frisk and community policing in New York City.
Gov. Kathy Hochul expressed her condolences for families of both officers shortly after the NYPD made the announcement.
"We will never forget Officer Mora’s and Officer Rivera’s heroism," the governor tweeted. "We stand with their families in grief. And we will continue to take meaningful action to make New Yorkers safer."
In a statement, Police Benevolent Association President Patrick Lynch said that Mora would “live on in the heart of every New York City police officer form this day forward.”
“Police Officer Mora showed us what it means to carry out our mission with courage, skill and humanity,” he added.
This is a breaking news story and will be updated as developments warrant.