By Rich Bockmann
Nassau County’s district attorney Thursday filed charges against the St. Albans man accused of killing a Nassau County police officer and a Brooklyn man Tuesday in cold blood and the Queens DA announced the arrest of a man suspected of helping the accused to evade prosecution.
Darrell Fuller, 33, appeared in Nassau district court in Hempstead, his arm in a sling and wearing a bullet-proof vest, where he was charged with two counts of first-degree murder, one count of robbery and two counts of criminal possession of a weapon, District Attorney Kathleen Rice said
Queens DA Richard Brown also announced that a Jamaica man who authorities claim shot Fuller in an attempt to cover up his alleged crimes had been charged with criminal possession of two firearms, one of which was believed to be the murder weapon.
Authorities said Fuller allegedly shot Officer Arthur Lopez to death just after 11 a.m. Tuesday when the 8-year veteran and his partner pulled Fuller over in Bellerose after he was in a car accident. Fuller then fled the scene and drove down the Cross Island Parkway where he is accused of fatally shooting 52-year-old Raymond Facey in the head and stole his car, police said.
“For these despicable crimes, Darrell Fuller faces the sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole,” Rice said.
Fuller was arrested in St. Albans by the NYPD after a 7-1/2 hour manhunt along the Queens/Nassau border. Authorities said police responded to a 911 call of shots fired and found Fuller inside a mini-van with what they described as “self-inflicted” gunshot wounds.
Nassau County Assistant District Attorney Mitch Benson said Fuller enlisted an accomplice to shoot him in order to make it appear he was a victim.
“We did determine he reached out to associates of his after the shootings were finished… and he did engineer a situation in which he would be wounded, apparently to try to create the impression that he was an innocent victim and not a perpetrator,” Benson said. “I would say those wounds were inflicted because of his own efforts, and so when I say ‘self-inflicted’ I don’t want to get into the specifics of the mechanics of how it occurred but he was not an innocent victim. Suffice it to say he caused this to occur.”
Benson said investigators had collected “ample evidence” against Fuller, including eyewitness accounts, line-up identifications, forensics evidence, telephone records and a murder weapon.
Benson said police recovered two guns when they arrested Fuller’s suspected accomplice in Queens, one of which was believed to be the weapon used to kill Lopez and Facey as well as to injure Fuller.
District Attorney Brown identified the man as 27-year-old Gerald Williams of Jamaica, and said he had been charged with two counts of criminal possession of a weapon.
Brown said police allegedly found a TEC 9 semi-automatic firearm and a Ruger 9mm semi-automatic pistol in the car Williams lent to Fuller.
The Queens DA said his office was awaiting ballistics test to determine if the Ruger was the murder weapon.
The Nassau County Police Benevolent Association has established a memorial fund in the name of Officer Lopez.
Reach reporter Rich Bockmann by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 718-260-4574.