NYPD cop from Brooklyn killed by friendly fire

NEW YORK - An off-duty NYPD officer from Brooklyn was fatally shot by a fellow officer Thursday night while chasing a suspect who had broken into his car, police say.

According to investigators, the incident happened at around 10:30 p.m. when 25-year-old Officer Omar Edwards got off work at a Harlem police station and saw a man, later identified as Miguel Santiago, breaking into his personal car and rummaging through his belongings. Police say Edwards confronted Santiago, and a struggle ensued between the two men. Santiago eventually ran away, prompting Edwards to draw his gun and give chase.

Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly says a plainclothes anti-crime unit that was driving by witnessed the scuffle between Edwards and Santiago and intervened, not knowing that one of the men was a police officer. One of the officers in the unit fired six shots, two of them hitting Edwards in the arm and chest. Kelly says Edwards did not fire his weapon. Edwards was taken to Harlem Hospital, where he died from his injuries an hour later.

Kelly says investigators have yet to question the officer who fired the fatal shots. He says the NYPD is waiting for the district attorney's office to take charge of that portion of the investigation.

Police say Santiago, who has a history of arrests, is being questioned and remains in custody.

Edwards, who got married only last month, is survived by his wife and their two young children.

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