Man Pleads Guilty To Firing On Two Officers

The man who in 2020 ambushed New York City police officers twice in twelve hours, wounding two, was sentenced last Friday to 23 years to life after pleading guilty last month, the Associated Press reported.

Robert Williams, 47, pleaded guilty in September to two counts of attempted murder of a police officer in connection to the two separate shootings that occurred in February 2020 in the Bronx.

On February 8, 2020, Williams strolled up to a marked police van parked on a street in the Bronx and asked the two officers for directions. He then opened fire into the van, wounding one of the officers, Sgt. Paul Stroffolino, who was struck in the chin and neck. Williams then fled the scene.

The following morning, Williams walked into a police station in the Bronx and opened fire. He struck NYPD Lt. Jose Gautreaux in the arm and narrowly missed other police officers before he ran out of bullets. Police fired back at Williams who tossed his handgun away and laid down on the floor.

Both injured officers survived.

According to prosecutors, Williams told detectives after his arrest that he was “tired” of the police.

During his sentencing hearing last Friday, Williams claimed that he did not intend to kill anyone. He apologized to his family, the Bronx police precinct, and the officers he shot. He claimed that in the past, he had been beaten by police, and once used a stun gun on him.

In sentencing Williams, Bronx Judge Ralph Fabrizio was unmoved by his apology and described his actions as “inexcusable.”

Sgt. Stroffolino and his partner Sgt. Brian Hanlon attended Williams’ sentencing.

Hanlon told the court that he continues to carry the image of his partner “holding his neck” as blood flowed over “the front of his uniform.”