A 32-year-old man was killed by New York Police Department officers Sunday morning after he allegedly reached for a gun in his waistband, authorities said.
According to a preliminary investigation, four officers, who were all working in plainclothes, fired their weapons during the shooting in Queens, striking the man, George Tillman, authorities said.
A .40 caliber Hi-Point handgun was recovered from the scene, police said.
A man who was with Mr. Tillman was being questioned by investigators, police said.
The officers were all assigned to a neighborhood conditions unit but had been tasked Sunday morning to work in an anti-crime capacity by local commanders, an NYPD spokesman said.
According to department policy, conditions-unit officers must wear uniforms on assignment, a designation that came under scrutiny last month following questions over the arrest of a postal worker.
Anti-crime officers, however, can work in plainclothes.
The incident occurred around 1:30 a.m. near the intersection of 116th Avenue and 135th Street in a residential stretch of Queens’s South Ozone Park neighborhood, police said.
Two officers traveling south on 135th Street in an unmarked police car noticed Mr. Tillman standing outside a double-parked sport-utility vehicle holding an open bottle of alcohol and noticed a gun in his waistband, police said.
When the officers tried to confront Mr. Tillman, he fled, refusing repeated orders by the officers to stop, police said.
As Mr. Tillman approached the corner of 116th Avenue, a second unmarked police car carrying two officers and a sergeant arrived and tried to confront him, police said.
During the confrontation, police said Mr. Tillman reached for his gun, at which point four of the officers fired their guns, striking him several times in the torso.
Mr. Tillman was taken to Jamaica Hospital Medical Center where he was pronounced dead around 2 a.m., officials said.
Under department rules, the officers will automatically be assigned to administrative duty while department investigators review the shooting.