2009-04-03 / Top Stories

Rockaway Cop-Stabber 'Unfit For Trial'

By Howard Schwach

Deranged stabber Neil Perreira of Far Rockaway has been ordered to a psychiatric facility to be stabilized, and will not stand trial until he is able to understand his own defense. Deranged stabber Neil Perreira of Far Rockaway has been ordered to a psychiatric facility to be stabilized, and will not stand trial until he is able to understand his own defense. Although a Queens grand jury has indicted a Rockaway man who stabbed a police sergeant in the eye in a January attack, a court-ordered psychiatrist has found that the emotionallydisturbed man suffers from paranoid schizophrenia and must be sent to a state psychiatric facility to be stabilized before he can be arraigned on charges of attempted murder, sources say.The deranged man, identified as Neil Perreira of Far Rockaway, allegedly stabbed Sergeant Timothy Smith in the eye after Smith and other police responded to a 6:13 p.m. call for an emotionally-disturbed man on January 15, at 24-50 Collier Avenue in Far Rockaway.

When the officers arrived, they found Perreira, 32, cutting vegetables at the kitchen table. As soon as Perreira saw the police, sources say, he fled to a bedroom at the back of the house. More police arrived at the scene, and Sergeant Timothy Smith knocked at the bedroom door.

According to court records, Perreira suddenly opened the door with the knife in his hand and stabbed Smith in the eye. He then allegedly injured two other police officers, Daniel Sjoberg and Edward Simon, in a scuffle to get the knife from the deranged man.

NYPD Sergeant Timothy Smith was stabbed in the eye by an emotionally disturbed man in January. Doctors had to remove his eye and drain the blood from his brain. NYPD Sergeant Timothy Smith was stabbed in the eye by an emotionally disturbed man in January. Doctors had to remove his eye and drain the blood from his brain. Police sources say that Perreira was the subject of no fewer than 10 emotionally disturbed person (EDP) calls over the past eight years. He was arrested seven times, often setting fires. Once, police say, he turned on the gas and threatened to blow up everybody in the house.

Smith was first transported to Jamaica Hospital, but was later transferred to Bellevue Hospital in Manhattan, where surgeons worked to clear his brain of blood. Doctors had to remove Smith's eye and stanch the bleeding to his brain.

The veteran cop, assigned to the 101 Precinct, has had to learn to talk all over again, his relatives told reporters.

"He is making progress. Everybody said that he's ahead of the curve, but to me it's very, very slow," his father, Frank Smith, told Daily News reporter Nicole Bode.

"He keeps asking the same questions about that night, as if his mind can't quite grasp it, as if it's too terrible to

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