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Everytown Statement on NYPD Officer Killed in Line of Duty with an Illegal Gun

Previous Everytown Research on Law Enforcement Homicide Found that 52 Percent of Incidents in Which Cops Were Shot to Death in the Line of Duty Are Committed by People Prohibited from Buying or Possessing Guns

While Source of Crime Gun Is Still Unknown, States that Require Background Checks on All Handgun Sales See 48 Percent Fewer Law Enforcement Homicides

NEW YORK – Following the killing of New York Police Department Officer Randolph Holder last night, Everytown for Gun Safety today released a statement from President John Feinblatt. Everytown has previously released research, along with the Major Cities Chiefs Association, that revealed 52 percent of incidents in which police officers were shot and killed in the line of duty in 2013 were committed by people prohibited from buying or possessing guns.

STATEMENT FROM JOHN FEINBLATT, PRESIDENT OF EVERYTOWN FOR GUN SAFETY:

“Our deepest sympathies are with the family and friends of Police Officer Randolph Holder and the entire NYPD today,” said John Feinblatt, president of Everytown for Gun Safety. “Yet again, a law enforcement officer has been killed in the line of duty by a criminal who got his hands on an illegal gun, which is consistent with research finding that more than half of police officers killed in the line of duty in 2013 were killed by people prohibited from possessing guns. While we don’t know the exact details of where this gun came from, we know we can do more to keep law enforcement and all Americans safe from the gun violence that results in 88 deaths every day. It’s time to close the loopholes that make it easy for dangerous people to get guns.”

Additional Information on the Shooting of NYPD Officer Randolph Holder:

Shooting Facts

The Incident


  • The shooter, 30, shot and killed New York Police Officer (Housing) Randolph Holder, 33, near East 120th St. and the FDR Drive in Manhattan. According to Police Commissioner William Bratton, Holder and his partner were investigating a report of a shooting near East 102nd St.
  • Witnesses told police that several men fled the area, heading north on a footpath near the FDR Drive, with the shooter reportedly stealing a bicycle at gunpoint along the way. The officers, who were in plainclothes at the time of the shooting, encountered at least one suspect at a pedestrian overpass at 120th St.
  • At least one suspect and the officers exchanged gunfire. Bratton told reporters that at least three separate shell casings from three different types of guns were found at the scene. Officer Holder was shot once in the head and was taken to Harlem Hospital, where he died less than an hour later.
  • The shooter was shot once in the leg. He fled the scene, continuing north, and was apprehended by responding officers near 124th St. He was treated at Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center and was released into police custody on Wednesday morning. Three other men were separately taken into custody in relation to the incident.
  • According to police, the shooter had been identified as a named suspect in a September 1 shooting in Manhattan.
  • According to the New York State Department of Corrections, the shooter was convicted of multiple felony drug crimes, meaning he was prohibited from buying or possessing guns.
  • At least one media source reports that police recovered a semiautomatic handgun and a revolver at and around the scene.

Additional Information:


  • Everytown for Gun Safety and the Major Cities Chiefs Association previously released research (available here) revealing that 52 percent of incidents in which police officers were shot and killed in the line of duty in 2013 were committed by people prohibited from buying or possessing guns. The analysis is based on the most recently available data from the FBI’s Law Enforcement Officers Killed and Assaulted (LEOKA) database and supplemented with media reports.
  • States that have not taken steps to close the background check loophole, export crime guns at a rate 2.5 times greater than states have made efforts to close this dangerous gap.
  • States that require background checks on all handgun sales see 48 percent fewer law enforcement officers killed with handguns.
  • Ninety percent of guns recovered in New York City crime come from out of state and the gun used in the recent killing of NYPD Officer Brian Moore (more information on this shooting available here) is an example of how states with weak gun laws fuel an ‘Iron Pipeline’ of illegal guns across the country. The gun used to kill Officer Moore was traced to Little’s Bait, Tackle & Pawn in Perry, Georgia, from which 23 guns were reported stolen in October 2011. Nine of those guns have since been recovered by the New York City Police Department.
  • In 2006, New York City sued 27 gun dealers in 5 states who were identified as being the sources of a disproportionate number of crime guns recovered in New York. Overall, 21 dealers settled. A Johns Hopkins University evaluation of this litigation found that safety measures imposed in the settlement — including conducting background checks for dealer employees and video recording sales — reduced the flow of crime guns from those dealers by 84 percent.