Street renamed to honor 2 NYPD detectives killed undercover nearly 2 decades ago

"These officers made the ultimate sacrifice, and our city made a pledge to them and their families to never forget."


By Kyle Lawson
Staten Island Advance

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — Nearly 20 years after two Staten Island detectives paid the ultimate sacrifice for the borough they swore to protect, the intersection where they were found fatally wounded now bears their legacy.

As of Saturday, under the street sign for St. Paul Avenue in Tompkinsville, a new sign reads "Detective James V Nemorin Way."

Attached to the same pole, the sign for Hannah Street bears the name "Detectives Rodney J Andrews."

Legislation for the renaming was penned by Council Member Kamillah Hanks, who was joined Saturday at the ceremony by the NYPD's top brass, government leaders and families of the late officers.

"Detectives Nemorin and Andrews exhibited extraordinary bravery and a commitment to keeping our neighborhoods safe. They made the ultimate sacrifice in the name of that commitment, and our city made a pledge to these two fallen detectives and the family members who survived them, to never forget them," Hanks said.

Six years ago, Hanks led a community effort to have a Staten Island Ferry named in the detectives' honor.

WORKING TO REMOVE GUNS FROM THE STREETS

Nemorin and Andrews were working undercover on March 10, 2003 on the borough's North Shore.

They were driving a black Nissan Maxima with Stapleton gang member Ronell Wilson, who was riding in the back seat, according to Advance/SILive.com archives.

The detectives met with Wilson to buy a rapid-fire pistol — a TEC-9 — for $1,200 in order to help take the dangerous weapon off the street. Wilson asked Nemorin and Andrews to stop at an apartment so he could pick up the weapon, forcing backup cops riding nearby to keep their vehicles moving to avoid being spotted.

The cops were then shot in the head with a .44-caliber revolver. Their bodies were later found near the corner of St. Paul's Avenue and Hannah Street in Tompkinsville.

Despite the frantic efforts of emergency responders, the detectives were pronounced dead at what is now Richmond University Medical Center in West Brighton.

"The streets named in their honor ensures the story of their lives holds a rightful place in our city's history," said Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell in a statement issued Saturday.

Wilson, then 19, fled the scene, sparking a massive manhunt. He was apprehended a short time later. A jury found the defendant guilty in the high-profile slayings in December 2006.

Beautiful street co-naming ceremony honoring two of New York's Finest, who exhibited extraordinary courage and sacrifice in the naming of keeping our city safe.

We never forgot Detectives Nemorin and Andrews. Tompkinsville will forever bear the memory of their heroism & service. pic.twitter.com/KFTVnnAJ2A

— Kamillah M. Hanks (@KamillahMHanks) October 1, 2022

'WE WILL NEVER FORGET!'

As a members of the NYPD's Ceremonial Unit stood firmly attention Saturday at the intersection of St. Paul Avenue and Hannah Street, family of the late officers unveiled the new street signs.

Nearly 20 years after their untimely deaths, the signs ensure their contributions to the community will not soon be forgotten, police officials said over the weekend.

"Today, we honor [these detectives] for their ultimate sacrifice as they worked to rid Staten Island of illegal guns," said District Attorney Michael E. McMahon. "I am eternally grateful for their sacrifice and the NYPD's sacrifice to keep us safe.

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(c)2022 Staten Island Advance, N.Y.
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McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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