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March and April cops of the month honored at the 76th Precinct

Three cops received top honors in their precinct — the 76th Precinct, in Red Hook, Carroll Gardens and Cobble Hill — for March and April for their work in stopping an attack by a man with a knife and in finding a long-lost bike.

The March honorees were police officers Daniel Loffredo and Keith DSouza, who, on March 22, responded to a call at 541 Court Street, where a 53-year-old man had been stabbed in the shoulder, reportedly by his 28-year-old roommate, who had already fled. As the officers prepared to search for the suspect, he arrived, knife in hand, and allegedly ignored orders to drop his weapon, instead “lunging” at Officer Loffredo, who refused to shoot and fell backwards to avoid the knife. However, when the suspect allegedly lunged again, this time at Officer DSouza, he was shot and later died.

Captain Jeffrey Schiff, commanding officer of the 76th Precinct, praised the officers’ restraint in not firing until beyond “the last minute.”

Captain Jeffrey Schiff of the 76th Precinct presented Police Officer Benigno Gonzalez with the Cop of the Month award for April 2013.

The April honoree, police officer Benigno “Benny” Gonzalez, was recognized for his mental acuity in taking note that a red bike had recently been stolen and then using that knowledge when spotting 54-year-old Ronald Jefferson riding a red bike on the sidewalk. After running the bike’s serial number, Gonzalez discovered that while the bike was not the one stolen that month, it had been stolen from a burglary that took place back in 2007.

It is unknown whether Jefferson had anything to do with that nearly-six-year-old burglary, but as riding a bike on the sidewalk is against the law, it is punishable by a large fine.

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