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Updated: April 2, 2024, 8:04 AM

Guy Rivera, Lindy Jones indicted as accused shooter, driver in killing of NYPD Det. Jonathan Diller from Long Island

By Anthony M. DeStefano

A Queens grand jury has indicted two men in connection with the shooting that led to the death of NYPD Det. Jonathan Diller of Massapequa Park, officials disclosed Monday.

Guy Rivera, 34, the Queens man who allegedly shot Diller during a traffic stop on March 25, was charged by a grand jury with first-degree murder, second-degree murder, weapons charges and other offenses, prosecutors with the Queens County District Attorney's Office stated during a court hearing.

Lindy Jones, 41, Rivera’s co-defendant and the man police said was the driver of the car involved in the shooting, was charged with a number of weapons possession offenses stemming from the police discovery of a defaced 9 mm handgun found in the glove compartment of the vehicle, a Kia Soul, prosecutors said. He was not charged in Diller's death.

Diller was part of a detail of community response officers in the vicinity of a bus stop outside 1919 Mott Avenue in Queens when he approached the Kia and asked Rivera, who was seated in the passenger seat, to open the door. Police said Rivera resisted and engaged in a brief tug-of-war with Diller over the door when Rivera allegedly fired once from a .380-caliber handgun, striking Diller in the abdomen under his protective vest.

Investigators last week said forensic examination of the gun used to kill Diller and the one found in the car determined that neither had been reported stolen or traced to any other crimes in New York City. The ownership trail of the weapons was being traced, said the investigators.

Revelations about the grand jury action came during a court hearing for Jones before acting Queens Supreme Court Justice Gia Morris on an earlier weapons possession charge stemming from 2023, according to Queens Assistant District Attorney Gabriel Reale.

Overas Reale asked that Jones’ earlier $75,000 bail be revoked because he is a flight risk due to the new charges. Morris ordered Jones held without bail on the latest case, citing the seriousness of the new charges, his criminal record, which included an attempted murder conviction, and the apparent strength of the prosecution’s case.

Reale said that at one point under questioning by officers after he was arrested in the 2023 case Jones said, “My name is Lindy Jones and I shoot people.”

The assigned defense attorney for Jones is Murray Singer and he had no comment on the case.

Jones was not charged with shooting Diller, who died in the hospital the night of the shooting, and was buried Saturday after services in which he was promoted to the rank of detective. Rivera, who is accused of shooting Diller, was also charged with attempted first-degree murder of a second officer, who was not hurt, but at whom he pointed his weapon, said police.

Rivera was wounded by a shot fired by another police officer and remains in hospital in stable condition, officials said.

Morris scheduled Jones to return to Queens Supreme Court on April 16. Officials said Rivera, who wasn’t in court Monday, is scheduled to have a court appearance on May 7.

“We live in a society where the shooting of a police officer needs to be held accountable, It really says something about the society, where you go after a police officer, people who are sworn to uphold the law,” Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz said outside the courtroom.

Police Benevolent Association president Patrick Hendry, flanked by scores of uniformed officers on the courthouse steps, said that Jones was a “career criminal, who less than year ago was arrested for an illegal firearm. Why was he back on the streets?”

Diller is survived by his wife, Stephanie, and 1-year-old son, Ryan.