Watch CBS News

Driver charged in NYPD Det. Jonathan Diller's killing pleads not guilty

Driver charged in NYPD Det. Jonathan Diller's killing pleads not guilty
Driver charged in NYPD Det. Jonathan Diller's killing pleads not guilty 02:08

NEW YORK -- One of the two suspects charged in the shooting death of NYPD Det. Jonathan Diller was arraigned Tuesday.

Diller, a 31-year-old husband and father, was killed during a traffic stop last month.

Lindy Jones of Edgemere, Queens did not say a word as he faced a judge for his alleged connection to the March 25 killing. He has been charged with criminal possession of weapon in second degree.

In front of more than 100 officers in the courtroom, his lawyer, Murray Eric Singer, pleaded not guilty on Jones' behalf.

"Mr. Jones is presumed to be innocent," Singer said.

However, Queens Assistant District Attorney Gabriel J. Reale said statements made by Jones to police on March 25 include, "My man and me were getting liquor from the store. My man shot the cop and they shot him."

Traffic stop turned deadly

NYPD Det. Jonathan Diller CBS2

The assistant DA said Diller approached Jones' vehicle parked illegally at a Far Rockaway bus stop. The passenger in Jones' car, Guy Rivera, allegedly shot Diller in the stomach, just below his vest, killing him.

Diller had been with the department for three years and was remembered as a "cop's cop." He grew up in Franklin Square before moving to Massapequa Park, where he lived with his wife, Stephanie, and their 1-year-old son, Ryan.

"It doesn't matter how long this case takes. We're going to continue to pack these courtrooms to make sure that there's justice for our hero brother," Police Benevolent Association President Patrick Hendry said.

The assistant DA said Jones also claimed Rivera was a hitchhiker he picked up. In another statement to police, Jones allegedly said, "I didn't know it was going to go left like that. I can't shake the way he did it."

"Less than a year ago, he was arrested for an illegal firearm. Why was he back on the streets?" Hendry said.

Jones was remanded without bail. He faces 15 years if convicted in this case, as well as an additional 15 years for another case -- a robbery involving the use of a deadly weapon.

He was previously convicted of attempted murder.

Jones had family in court who declined to speak with the media, but one told him "Stay strong," as he was led out of the courtroom. His defense attorney said "No comment."

The next court date for Jones is on June 12. His attorney requested he be transferred from a Riverhead jail back to Rikers Island due to safety concerns.

The alleged shooter, Rivera, is due back in court on May 7.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.