Video Captures ‘Horrific Murder’ of Corrections Officer Ambushed While Sitting Inside Her Car

The New York Police Department released a video from Dec. 4 that shows a person in Brooklyn walking up to a car and firing several shots, killing a woman sitting inside. (New York Police Department)


Alastasia Bryan, a New York corrections officer, was sitting in her car when a gunman fired into the driver-side window, killing her immediately, police say.

The fatal shooting happened shortly after 9 p.m. on Dec. 4 in the Flatlands neighborhood in Brooklyn, according to the New York City Police Department. The ambush was captured on surveillance video, which shows two men wearing hoodies walking around the area that night. A segment of the footage shows a car driving around the neighborhood.

In the last part of the video, a man is seen walking up to Bryan’s car, a gun in his right hand.

“He got out of the car and fired five rounds into the car, striking her and killing her,” NYPD Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce told reporters at a news conference. “This male then got into a car and then drove away.”

Bryan, 25, was shot in the head and torso, police said. She had just started working at the Rikers Island prison complex and was about to go to Rikers for a shift when she was killed, CBS New York reported.

Residents in the neighborhood gathered for a candlelight vigil the day after Bryan’s death.

“I know how my family is right now, with the pain,” her uncle, Anthony Moore, told CBS New York. “She was a lovable person, kindhearted and cared for everyone.”

Police are still searching for the two suspects and a gold or tan four-door Hyundai Elantra.

Department of Correction Commissioner Joseph Ponte issued a statementsaying that anyone who may recognize the attacker should contact police immediately.

“This has been the most difficult time throughout the department as we continue to mourn the loss of our fallen officer,” Ponte said. “Despite our grief, we are working closely with the NYPD and following any leads that could help identify and find Officer Bryan’s killer and bring them to justice.”

A union representing corrections officers in New York has offered a $50,000 reward for any information leading to the arrest of Bryan’s killer.

“Tonight our correction family and the entire City of New York is shocked and grieving the horrific murder of one of the youngest members of New York City’s Boldest,” New York City Correction Officers’ Benevolent Association President Elias Husamudeen said in a statement issued a few hours after the shooting. “There are no words that can express the depth of this tragedy.”

Bureau of Labor Statistics data show that corrections officers have one of the highest rates of work-related injuries. In 2011, there were 254 workplace assaults and violent injuries for every 10,000 full-time corrections officer. That’s about 36 times the rate for all American workers.

Work-related fatalities, however, aren’t as frequent. Most recent federal data shows that only 113 work-related deaths were reported from 1999 to 2008, 25 percent of which resulted from homicides.

Bryan’s death came about a week after a state corrections officer and his wife were shot during a home invasion in Queens.

Henry Wright, 58, and his wife, Sharon Floyd Wright, 52, were shot after two armed men forced their way into their home, according to media reports. The couple survived. Shea Roberts, a 24-year-old neighbor of the couple, was later arrested and charged with attempted murder and criminal possession of a weapon, ABC affiliate WABC reported.

Last month, a New  York City police officer was fatally shot and another was injured in the Bronx. That shooting occurred less than two days after a lone attacker in Iowa gunned down two police officers in separate ambush attacks.

While the number of police officers killed by suspects declined last year, that tally has already increased so far this year. In some cases, officers have been killed in high-profile incidents, including ambushes in Dallas and Baton Rouge in July that left eight police officers dead. These killings also occurred at a time of intense national focus on fatal shootings by police officers, incidents that have prompted protests of law enforcement that, in turn, have caused officers to say they feel vilified and uneasy.

Police also expressed concerns about ambushes and attacks after two pairs of officers were killed during incidents in 2014, first in Las Vegas and then New York.

It remains unclear why Bryan was killed, or whether her death was somehow related to her job as a corrections officer.

CBS New York reported that she was the assailant’s intended target.

Mark Berman contributed to this story.

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