BROOKLYN - Police confirmed Saturday that the officer shot in the face during a Brooklyn traffic stop died after remaining in grave condition for nearly a week in Kings County Hospital.
Police say Officer Russel Timoshenko, 23, and his partner Herman Yan were shot at while approaching a stolen SUV in Crown Heights Monday. Yan sustained less severe injuries and has been released from the hospital. The men accused of the shooting were arraigned at Brooklyn criminal court Friday.
Timoshenko was breathing with the help of a respirator and was paralyzed from the neck down as a result of his injuries. Officials say he died at 4:14 p.m. with his parents by his side.
Members of his Orthodox Russian faith, as well as family and friends prayed for him around the clock. They performed special services and read prayers at his bedside, and were due to hold a vigil Saturday. The vigil was canceled upon news of Timoshenko's death.
New York Police Commissioner Ray Kelly says Timoshenko died while on life support. ?The officer passed away on his own," Kelly said. "It is a very sad day for all of us."
The shooting suspects had been facing charges of attempted murder. Charges were stepped up to first-degree murder after Timoshenko's death, a spokesperson from the Brooklyn District Attorney's Office says.
AP wire reports contributed to this article.
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