2005-02-11 / Letters

Keep Cop Killer Where He Belongs: In Prison

On the night of April 10, 1980, nearly 25 years ago, five men robbed and pistol-whipped the customers of a social club in Arverne. The robbery was called to police and a number of units from the 101 Precinct in Far Rockaway gave chase. Among those police officers were long-time partners, Robert Sorrentino and Jack Dowd. The two officers chased the men to Central Avenue nearby St. Mary’s Star of the Sea Church and what was then St. Joseph’s Hospital. Four men bailed out of their car and the cops followed, splitting up as they did so. Sorrentino followed some of the men into the schoolyard at St. Mary’s Star of the Sea. Dowd later reported that he heard gunfire and rushed to the school to find his partner shot. Although Sorrentino fought for his life for two weeks, he finally succumbed. Four of the men were arrested and convicted; each sentenced to 25 years to life in prison. Three of the men died in prison. One man is left. His name is Russell Carroll and he is due for a parole hearing this month. Spurred by his niece, more than 8,450 signatures have been collected on an on-line petition asking that he not be paroled, that he die in prison as did his mates. We agree. His parole must be denied and he should remain in prison until his death. That should be the cost of killing an officer of the law..

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