November 5, 2016 | 3:34pm
By Larry Celona, Kevin Fasick and Kenneth Garger
|Pat Lynch (right) brings flowers to a memorial for slain officer Paul Tuozzolo. Photo: Richard Harbus|
The veteran cop gunned down by a career criminal in The Bronx was a “silent warrior” who wanted to finish up his long career where the action is — on the streets.
Sgt. Paul Tuozzolo, a 41-year-old father of two, had done a stint as a domestic violence officer before asking to be back on patrol — where he died at the hands of a man who repeatedly terrorized his own wife.
“He was just a good cop, a good sergeant, a good leader who was respected by those above him and those he supervised,” Ed Mullins, head of the Sergeants Benevolent Association, said of Tuozzolo. “He’d asked to go back out on the street.”
Bullets flew Friday as the 19-year-NYPD vet, Sgt. Emmanuel Kwo, 30, and a cadet with just three days of field training under his belt, responded to a 911 call in the Van Nest section of The Bronx, where Manuel Rosales’ estranged wife and mother-in-law lived.
Rosales allegedly forced his way into the home, threatening the women and two children, including his three-year-old son.
He fled as cops arrived, until Tuozzolo, Kwo and the cadet boxed in his red Jeep on Noble Avenue. Tuozzolo approached the vehicle with his gun drawn, but Rosales blasted him in the head and chest before officers, including the steely-nerved rookie, could return fire.
|Pat Lynch visits a memorial for slain officer Paul Tuozzolo outside the 43rd precinct on Saturday.Photo: Richard Harbus|
One tearful colleague at Tuozzolo’s 43rd Precinct mourned his death Saturday as officers, including Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association head Patrick Lynch, streamed in during the course of the day to pay their respects.
“He was the best, I just can’t believe…I can’t believe he’s gone,” she said. “Solid guy, just a solid guy….He was a great guy. Great cop, great friend….He gave his life, no questions.”
Mullins, who knew Tuozzolo as a friend, called him “a guy with a lot of common sense. He didn’t get excited, he didn’t get rattled.”
Kwo, a nine-year veteran who was shot in the leg, was released from the hospital less than 24 hours after being shot. The cadet was home with family, sources said.
Rosales, of Brentwood, LI, had 17 arrests under his belt and served three stints in state prison. He was arrested in July for violating an order of protection his wife had taken out against him.
A neighbor, Mohamed Hussian, 59, called Morales’ Wild West-style shootout with the NYPD “crazy” and defended the officers.
“When the police get attacked they have to defend themselves,” said Hussian, adding he’d seen Rosales outside with his son earlier in the week.
“So now we have another family that’s ruined. Two children that will grow up without a father. A wife that’s now devastated. That can happen to any police officer that goes on patrol any day,” said Lynch.
Tuozzolo’s family is devastated, he said.
Lynch praised the work of the cadet, noting that while several officers “acted heroically,” the rookie “acted like a professional of thirty years. Saw the gun, saw his fellow police officers go down, did what he had to do. Difficult job, and he’ll live with that as well.”
Additional reporting by Jennifer Bain and Georgett Roberts