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Slain NYPD cop Jonathan Diller remembered at funeral: ‘Our hearts break’


(NEW YORK) — Slain New York Police Department Officer Jonathan Diller was remembered as a hero who gave the ultimate sacrifice during his funeral on Saturday.

Police said Diller, 31, was shot and killed while conducting a traffic stop in Queens on Monday — becoming the first NYC police officer killed in the line of duty in two years.

“Our pouring of grief for this young man is real, and it is raw,” Mayor Eric Adams, a retired NYPD captain, said during Diller’s packed funeral service at Saint Rose of Lima Roman Catholic Church in Massapequa, Long Island. “When you see the photos of him with his wife and young son, our hearts break.”

NYPD Commissioner Edward Caban said Dillen lost his life in a “sudden and senseless act of violence,” but that the fallen officer’s legacy will be “his grit, his devotion, his love” and a life rooted in service.

“He loved this work and he was darn good at it,” Caban said in his remarks during the funeral. “He went toward the danger, he put himself in harm’s way, and he did it so that other New Yorkers wouldn’t have to.”

On Monday, Officer Diller approached an illegally parked vehicle with another officer and asked the two men inside to move their car, according to police. Police say the men in the car refused to roll down their windows — and instead of showing their hands as requested, one shot the officer.

Diller yelled out that he had been shot but was able to wrestle the firearm away from the gunman, officials said.

“Even after he was mortally wounded, John kept fighting,” Caban said. “He wrestled the gun out of the shooter’s hand, saving lives to the very end.”

Caban posthumously promoted the fallen officer to detective first grade with the shield number 110 — his 1-year-old son’s birthday.

Through tears, Stephanie Diller said her husband was her soul mate, and that he always wanted to be a dad.

“He loved to make everyone laugh and he had the most infectious personality,” she said during the funeral service.

She said their lives were “pretty much perfect” until five days ago.

“He wasn’t the type to sugarcoat anything, so I won’t sugarcoat this: This is devastating,” Stephanie Diller said. “It’s a devastating, senseless and tragic loss for so many — our family, our friends and the entire city of New York.”

“It’s a shame that someone who brought so much positivity to the world was given such a negative ending,” she continued.

Stephanie Diller said it breaks her heart that her son was robbed of getting to know his dad, and that her husband won’t be able to teach him how to play ice hockey, ride a bike or drive.

“How many more police officers and how many more families need to make the ultimate sacrifice before we start protecting them?” she said. “I don’t wish this kind of pain on anyone.”

Guy Rivera, 34, the suspect accused of fatally shooting Diller, was charged with murder of a police officer, attempted murder and criminal possession of a weapon. He was being treated for a gunshot wound to the back after Diller’s partner shot him during the incident. Rivera has yet to be arraigned on the charges.

The second suspect in the incident — 41-year-old Lindy Jones — was charged with criminal possession of a weapon and possession of a defaced firearm. During a court appearance on Wednesday, prosecutors highlighted his history of violent crime and missed court dates in arguing for holding him without bail. The judge agreed that he posed a flight risk and remanded him.

Both suspects have a lengthy criminal history: Jones, who has had 14 prior arrests including attempted murder and robbery, was out on bail in connection to a separate crime, police records indicate. Rivera was previously arrested by the NYPD 21 times, according to police records.

Adams vowed to never forget Diller’s sacrifice.

“We will do everything in our power to ensure that all New Yorkers and police officers live in the safest big city in America,” he said. “We’re going to make sure you have everything you need to do your job, including making sure that violent career criminals are held accountable for their crimes, and doing all we can to end gun violence in this city.”

“That is what Jonathan was committed to doing, and that is what we will continue to do,” the mayor continued.

The funeral followed two days of wakes. Former President Donald Trump attended the wake on Thursday, telling reporters afterward, “What happened is such a sad, sad event, such a horrible thing.”

President Joe Biden spoke to Eric Adams on Thursday to offer his condolences for Diller’s killing, according to the White House.

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