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Monday, January 12, 2009

[NY] Jean's scream - A 20 year echo

...NYPD is "entitled to governmental immunity" for allowing Officer Felix Key to have his guns back, despite prior abuse charges. He would later use the same firearms to murder Jean Singleton and commit suicide... He dragged her screaming out on the street, directly across from Police Headquarters and shot her four times. He then shot himself in the head in front of dozens of witnesses, many of them fellow cops...

EXCERPT FROM BOOK: NEXT TIME, SHE'LL BE DEAD
By Ann Jones
...And what about poor Feliix Key, the New York City cop who on May 19, 1989, dragged his "girlfriend," Jean Singleton, into th street in front of the police headquarters, shot her four times, killing her, and then killed himself. Jean Singleton reportedly had been trying to end the relationship, saying that Officer Key was "too jealous and overprotective," and the police had "disciplined" Officer Key befor e for threatening another woamn at gunpoint; yet the Police Departments's official spokesperson (a woman) described the killings as "a lover's quarerel between the two of them." Nobody used the term "murder." And the New York Post ran a banner headline on the front page: Tragedy of a Lovesick Cop." [LINK]

OFF-DUTY OFFICER KILLS CO-WORKER, SELF

Deseret News
Published: Saturday, May 20, 1989 12:00 a.m. MDT

An off-duty policeman Friday fatally shot a civilian police employee as she begged for mercy on a crowded street, then killed himself just hours before a department memorial service honoring officers slain last year.

Witnesses watched in horror as the officer pumped at least three shots from his .38-caliber revolver into the screaming woman at the height of rush hour and turned the gun on himself while she crumbled dying to the street behind the red-brick police headquarters building in Lower Manhattan.Investigators believe Officer Felix Key, 34, who was on his day off, and Jean Singleton knew one another but were unsure of their relationship or what sparked the dispute, said Lt. Steve Davis, a police spokesman. Both were unmarried and Singleton, 40, worked as a police administrative aide in the department's pension section. [LINK]

OFF-DUTY NYC COP KILLS GIRLFRIEND, HIMSELF
PAIR HAD QUARRELED OUTSIDE POLICE HEADQUARTERS

Watertown Daily Times (NY)
Saturday, May 20, 1989

A city policeman, off-duty but armed with two guns, shot and killed his girlfriend Friday and then killed himself after a lover's quarrel outside police headquarters, police said.

Earlier in his career, the officer had spent more than a year on modified assignment - without his guns and shield - for psychological reasons after threatening another woman, officials said.

The officer, Felix Key, 34, of Brooklyn, died at 9:25 a.m. at Bellevue Hospital; Jean Singleton, 42, who worked as a retirement counselor at police headquarters, was pronounced dead at the same time at Beekman Downtown Hospital, said police spokesman Sgt. John Clifford.

The officer, a six-year veteran of the force who was assigned to Brooklyn Central Booking, "appeared to have been waiting for her," said Assistant Chief Aaron Rosenthal, chief of Manhattan detectives.

Key was off-duty and was wearing a windbreaker and trousers.

Witnesses in the area told detectives they had seen Key's car double-parked near Pearl and Madison streets, where the shooting took place, at least 20 minutes before the 8:40 a.m. shooting occurred.

The area was crowded with people arriving early to attend a dedication ceremony at police headquarters, honoring officers slain in the line of duty in 1988.

Key apparently followed Singleton into a supermarket where she was stopping to buy a cup of coffee before going to work. As the officer approached her, Singleton "started hollering "Get away from me,"' Rosenthal said.

The officer dragged the screaming woman out of the store and onto the sidewalk, where the dispute escalated. "It looked like a tug-of-war, he's pulling her, she's trying to draw away from him," said Lt. Robert Seignious, who witnessed the incident.

"While he was pulling on her he took out the gun and shot her," the lieutenant said.

Key fired four shots into Singleton 's chest with his .38-caliber off-duty gun, Rosenthal said. After the shooting, the officer "walked a few steps, then fires a shot into the right side of his head," the chief added.

Police who searched the officer's body found a cocked Colt .45 automatic handgun strapped to his left side. The gun had one bullet in the chamber and five in the magazine.

Key had been placed on modified assignment from November 1984 to March 1986 for psychological reasons, according to police spokesman Sgt. John Clifford.

Key had allegedly threatened a woman, the sergeant said. The spokesman refused to specify the nature of the threat, or say whether the woman was a police department employe.

But a source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the woman Key allegedly threatened in 1984 had also worked for the department.

OFFICER KILLS LOVER IN SUICIDE
New York Times
Published: May 20, 1989

LEAD: An off-duty New York City police officer shot and killed his lover yesterday and then killed himself after a quarrel outside Police Headquarters, the police said.

An off-duty New York City police officer shot and killed his lover yesterday and then killed himself after a quarrel outside Police Headquarters, the police said.

The officer, Felix Key, 34 years old, of Brooklyn, had spent November 1984 to March 1986 on modified assignment - without his guns and shield - for psychological reasons after threatening another woman, officials said. He was restored to enforcement duties after psychological counseling.

Officer Key died at 9:25 A.M. at Bellevue Hospital Center. His friend, Jean Singleton, 42, of Brooklyn, who worked as a retirement counselor at Police Headquarters, was pronounced dead at the same time at New York Infirmary-Beekman Downtown Hospital, said a police spokesman, Sgt. John Clifford.

The officer, a six-year veteran of the force who was assigned to Brooklyn Central Booking, "appeared to have been waiting for her," said Assistant Chief Aaron Rosenthal, chief of Manhattan detectives.

The shooting took place at 8:40 A.M. near Pearl and Madison Streets. Officer Key followed Ms. Singleton into a supermarket, dragged her out onto the sidewalk, pulled out his .38-caliber off-duty gun and fired four shots into Ms. Singleton's chest. Then he walked a few steps and fired one shot into the right side of his head, the chief said.

The motive was believed to be "a lover's quarrel between the two of them," said a police spokesman, Officer Lisa Guerriero.

The area was crowded with people arriving to attend a ceremony at Police Headquarters honoring officers slain in the line of duty in 1988. [LINK]

NYPD IS CLEARED IN SLAY BY COP
New York Post (NY) - Wednesday, April 23, 2003
Author: DAREH GREGORIAN
The NYPD can't be held liable for giving a gun back to an allegedly abusive cop who later shot his girlfriend to death, a Manhattan judge has ruled.

In a decision made public yesterday, Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Doris Ling-Cohan found the NYPD is "entitled to governmental immunity" for allowing Officer Felix Key to have his guns back, despite prior abuse charges. He would later use the same firearms to murder Jean Singleton and commit suicide.

Singleton 's family had argued Key 's guns never should have been returned because the "officer had a history of psychological problems . . . including his having choked, hit and dragged his former girlfriend and putting a gun to the back of her head."

"The city knew he was a sick man, but it failed to help him," said Fred Lichtmacher, who's representing Singleton 's daughter Philicia in the case. Assistant Corporation Counsel Jacob Levin said, "Although this is clearly a tragic incident, the court affirmed the city's position that it was not responsible for Officer Felix Key 's actions."

Lichtmacher said he would appeal.

The roots of the Singletons ' case date back to 1984, when Key, who had been on the force for slightly over a year, was accused of holding his then-girlfriend against her will when she tried to end their relationship.

That woman, a civilian NYPD employee whose name is being withheld, reported the incident, but in a breach of department policy, the case was never referred to Internal Affairs, the filings say.

Instead, Key had his guns taken away and was referred to the department's Psychological Services Unit for counseling for "personal family problems," the filings say.

He was restored to full duty with his gun in 1986, about the same time he started his relationship with Singleton, Lichtmacher said.

The mother of two was a civilian NYPD employee Key had met when they were both assigned to the 84th Precinct in Brooklyn. When she tried to break off their relationship, Key waited for her in lower Manhattan on the morning of May 19, 1989, and then accosted her in the store where she always got her coffee.

He dragged her screaming out on the street, directly across from Police Headquarters and shot her four times. He then shot himself in the head in front of dozens of witnesses, many of them fellow cops.

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