CLAREMONT, the Bronx (PIX11) — An NYPD officer was shot while on patrol in the Bronx Tuesday night, police said.
Officer Dennis Vargas, 32, and another officer from the 42nd Precinct were patrolling the streets in Claremont around 10:45 p.m. when they began to approach a man on the sidewalk south of Third Avenue and Claremont Parkway. The man began to run from the officers and a foot chase ensued for about a block and a half before the man allegedly fired two shots toward the officers, striking Vargas in the arm, police said. The officers returned fire and shot the suspect in the head.
Police identified the man as 25-year-old Rameek Smith. He was taken to a hospital, where he died, according to the NYPD. Police said Smith was known to the NYPD and had a criminal history.
Vargas also was taken to a hospital. He has since been released.
A 9 mm Glock was recovered at the scene, police said. The gun was stolen in Richmond, Virginia in June 2021, according to police.
Mayor Eric Adams joined an overnight police briefing on the shooting to talk about his administration’s ongoing battle against gun violence.
“I’m focused on those who are carrying guns, particularly in this borough. The number of shootings that we are responding to every night is despicable, but everyone is looking at the attention we’re doing to stop fare evasion — where people are carrying guns — to stop people who are discharging weapons on our street with no regard to the innocent people of this borough and of this city,” Adams said.