DA: Man Gets Jail Time for Crash That Killed NYPD Officer

East Meadow man gets 10 months in prison for role in three-car crash that resulted in death of off-duty NYPD officer.

(Photo: NCPD)
(Photo: NCPD)

An East Meadow man was sentenced Friday for his role in a street race that ended in the death of a New York Police Department officer, reported the Nassau County District Attorney’s office.

Jonathan Lopez will spend 10 months behind bars after his November conviction of assault and reckless endangerment charges. He was acquitted of second-degree manslaughter.

Lopez, 22, was charged in September 2011 after being involved in a three-car crash with the off-duty NYPD Officer Kevin Jessup and FBI Special Agent Dawn Smallwood.


Authorities said Lopez was driving his Nissan 350Z on the Southern State Parkway near Bethpage State Parkway when he collided with Jessup’s car. The force of the collision threw Lopez’s car into Smallwood’s before flipping several times, authorities said.

Lopez escaped the crash uninjured, but Jessup was rushed to Nassau University Medical Center and later pronounced dead, cops said. Smallwood, Lopez, and a passenger in Jessup’s car were treated and released from  nearby hospitals.

Prosecutors said Lopez and Jessup were drag racing at the time of the collision.

“Mr. Lopez treated the road as his own personal speedway, and in doing so, put innocent drivers at risk for the sake of a cheap thrill,” NCDA Kathleen Rice said. “Today’s sentence is a strong reminder to anyone who would think of putting other lives in danger that street racers will be prosecuted for their crimes.”

Massa March 23, 2014 at 12:14 PM
I know this young officer died while drag racing. He was a big part of the fault that caused his own death and the injuries to the FBI agent. It makes me sick that he disrespected the good men and women that put on a uniform everyday to protect people.The police Department needs to do a better job hiring and not exepting guys like this who should never have been police officers in the first place.
Tristram Foxe March 29, 2014 at 10:56 AM
Massa I'm pretty sure the officer who was killed is referred to as a "Quota Filler".
Massa March 29, 2014 at 02:40 PM
I know the NYPD hires these morons to fill quota's, it is hurting what was a great Department. These are the same guys who get in trouble and make all the good men and women look bad. You have to see some of the clowns at applicant investigations who push these guys through. It's a waste to train these guys for 6 months and then have them screw up and get fired.
Massa March 29, 2014 at 02:47 PM
After 911 the NYPD dropped the starting salary down to 25,000 a year. Then they couldn't get anyone. They starting letting in sone real losers through the screening. The Department is to blame. Now a lot if senior guys are leaving and that is going to hurt the Department and the city. Everything that those big classes of the late 80's and early 90's did is turning around for the worst. It is a shame.
knee jerk March 31, 2014 at 11:39 PM
What's the odds that two out of three involved in this reckless drag racing/accident would LEO's?


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