A man suspected of shooting an off-duty NYPD cop in a horror robbery gone wrong was caught Monday night hiding in an upstate New York hotel.
Randy ‘Popper’ Jones, a 38-year-old alleged career criminal, was hiding out with his girlfriend and her kids when cops tracked him down following the shooting of officer Fayaz Adeed.
Jones is accused of gunning down Adeed after the officer and his brother-in-law were out buying an SUV they saw advertised on Facebook Marketplace on Saturday.
The exchange, in which Adeed is believed to have brought around $20,000, quickly turned sour, leading Jones to shoot the officer in the head. The shooter then fled the scene after Adeed’s brother-in-law grabbed the cop’s gun and returned fire.
Two days later, Jones was arrested using the victim’s handcuffs when the Regional Fugitive Task Force swooped in on a hotel in Spring Valley, New York. After initially being taken in as a person of interest, Jones was determined to be a suspect in the shooting after questioning.
Randy ‘Popper’ Jones was arrested Monday night after law enforcement tracked him to an upstate New York hotel
The career criminal was arrested using his victim’s own handcuffs
Prior to the shooting, Jones was being sought by law enforcement on a vehicle and traffic warrant from 2019, and the shooter is said to have a lengthy criminal rap sheet.
His criminal record includes arrests for grand larceny, harassment and strangulation, with a reported grand total of 22 busts over a long career as a criminal.
Jones is suspected of a prior robbery scam that utilized Facebook Marketplace similar to the one involved in the shooting of off-duty officer Fayaz Adeed on Saturday, reports ABC News.
Adeed, a 26-year-old father of two, who is fighting for his life as he remains on life support in a New York City hospital after being shot in the head in the botched robbery.
Michael Baldassano, NYPD Detective Bureau assistant chief, told reporters on Sunday the incident unfolded at around 7pm on Saturday evening in Brooklyn after the officer attempted to buy a Honda Pilot SUV from the suspect.
‘The arrangements for this purchase were made over a social media platform, and the location was selected. The officer arrived at the location accompanied by a relative,’ Mr Baldassano said.
Police said at a press conference Tuesday morning that as soon as the off-duty officer arrived at the exchange, Jones asked him and his brother-in-law: ‘Are you guys carrying a gun?’
After telling him they weren’t, he then put the officer in a headlock, pointed his gun at his head and demanded money.
Adeed, who has served five years on the force, was hit as several shots were fired before he was rushed to Brookdale Hospital.
The shooter is believed to have fled the scene without the officer’s cash, speeding off in a nearby black BMW SUV.
The NYPD confirmed at the Tuesday press conference that they expect to charge Jones imminently following the incident.
The horror robbery gone wrong unfolded Saturday night at around 7pm in Brookyln
A witness reported seeing the incident unfold, where they said the suspect ‘looked like he was shooting back at forth at someone’
New York City Mayor Eric Adams condemned the attack, pointing the blame at illegal guns in the hands of ‘bad people’
Jones’ attempts to flee led cops on a desperate manhunt, where they found the abandoned escape car in Harlem on Sunday at an address where the suspect reportedly lives with his girlfriend.
Sources reportedly revealed that the BMW belongs to the suspect’s mother, who lives near the scene of the crime in East New York, reports the New York Post.
Cops tracked the shooter to a hotel in upstate New York. During Monday’s arrest, Jones was hauled off in handcuffs belonging to the critically wounded cop that he allegedly shot before being transported back to Brooklyn.
Police sources reportedly revealed Jones, who is expected to be charged in the tragic Brooklyn shooting, retained a lawyer and refused to answer questions from investigators.
A witness to the incident revealed that they called 911 after watching the suspect while he fired a gun in the distance.
‘I saw a person wearing a black hoodie, black top, and gray sweats shooting like he was ducking in front of a car outside my house,’ a resident told The Post.
‘It looked like he was shooting back and forth at someone.’
Police launched a desperate manhunt for the suspect following the shooting on Saturday, leading to an arrest two days later
Police swooped in on a hotel in upstate New York on Monday, where the suspect was hiding out with his girlfriend and her kids
At a press conference on Saturday night following the attack, New York City Mayor Eric Adams vowed to catch the shooter.
‘We will catch the person responsible for this act,’ he said.
‘An officer was conducting a simple errand and a dangerous person pulled out a firearm.’
Adams also slammed the number of illegally owned guns in New York City as he condemned the shooting.
‘As we see so far, and so often in the city, too many illegal guns are in the hands of bad people and doing bad things,’ Adams said, adding he spoke to the officer’s heartbroken wife.