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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

[NY] Please pray for this teen in Sleepy Hollow

...Officer Antonio Benitez took his own life at around 8:30 a.m. Tuesday. His teenage daughter found him moments later...


Lower Hudson Journal news, NY
By Jorge Fitz-Gibbon and Shawn Cohen
August 19, 2008
SLEEPY HOLLOW - A veteran village cop died at his upstate home in an apparent suicide early this morning, authorities said. Police Officer Antonio Benitez, 42, died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound at 8:22 a.m., while his 15-year-old daughter was elsewhere in the Orange County home, said Washingtonville Police Chief Stephen Pascal. Pascal said the teenager found her father and dialed 911. "She was in the house, but a different part of the house," he said. "Everybody we spoke to really doesn't know what prompted it." Benitez joined the Sleepy Hollow department in 1992, and had previously worked as a Westchester County corrections officer for more than two years. He had been out of work with an unspecified injury since May. "We're in a state of shock, deeply saddened," said Sleepy Hollow Mayor Phillip Zegarelli. "Our heart goes out to the family, their daughter and his wife. These things are hard to explain." [Source]

Mid-Hudson News
August 19, 2008
WASHINGTONVILLE -- A 42-year-old member of the Sleepy Hollow Village Police Department shot and killed himself in his home in Washingtonville. Washingtonville Village Police confirmed that Officer Antonio Benitez took his own life at around 8:30 a.m. Tuesday. His teenage daughter found him moments later at their Woodfield Drive home. The Orange County Medical Examiner’s Office will conduct an autopsy on Wednesday to confirm the cause of death, a spokesman said. It is unclear whether Benitez used his service revolver, Washingtonville Police said. A source said the officer had been ill and was out on disability. [Source]


  1. I pray for the peace and solice of all that knew this amazing gentle person.

    He was well admired and liked by so many, including myself.

    I did not know him long or very well. But, what small amount I knew I loved.

    I will miss you and pray for your soul and family for the rest of my days.

  2. Tony we will miss you- you were a great person... Kelvia De Los Angeles

  3. We spoke so many times and when I was in need, he was there, on the job doing it so well. I saw how he treated others with problems with so much kindness and love. I saw him arrest a man and through it all, never took away this person's dignity. The sparkle in his eyes, the gentleness of his spirit walks with us now. Those that must be so strong day to day, many times do not know how to ask for help, it is one of those ironies.


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