New York Daily News

February 12, 2013


Hero Officer's Family Let Down

By Patrick J. Lynch

In this country, we put our trust in the jury system.  But it has let us down.

Justice was not served in Brooklyn in the murder trial of Peter Figoski.  The jury rejected the top count of intentional murder of a police officer against cop-killer Lamont Pride, which carried with it a sentence of life without parole. 

In order to reach this conclusion, the jury had to accept that Pride brought a 9mm semi-automatic handgun to the planned robbery of a drug dealer and racked a round into the chamber to ensure it was ready to fire with no intention of using it. 

They also had to believe the claim that, when faced with no option to escape the scene of the crime, he accidentally shot the cop who blocked his path to freedom.  They had to buy this account in the face of Pride’s videotaped confessions where he offered three different accounts of what occurred, admitting that he was just trying to find a way of reducing the time he’d have to serve.  In failing to properly to do its job, the jury victimized the family of Peter Figoski once again.

When police officers leave their family for work, they say goodbye to their family knowing full well it may be for the last time.  On the evening of December 11, 2011, Police Officer Peter Figoski departed for work.  It was his last goodbye to his family.  Early the next morning, while responding to a burglary, he encountered a career criminal who was desperate to escape the scene of another crime.  In a moment, the life of a dedicated police officer was tragically ended. 

And now the aftermath.  

For the family, it has been over a year with Peter absent.  Now, with the Figoski family seated 10 feet away, a jury let Pride skate on the top charge.  Sure, Pride will get a sentence of 25 years to life, but a day will come when he will be considered for parole.  His family will once again have to relive the horror of that night in an effort to keep him behind bars.

See the full New York Daily News story.