A Flatbush man has pleaded guilty to stabbing a police officer in the neck and taking the injured officer’s gun to shoot two other officers, while firing at many more, in a “terrorist inspired” attack, the Department of Justice and Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office announced.

Dzenan Camovic, 22, pleaded guilty in both federal and state court in Brooklyn on Wednesday to charges stemming from the June 2020 attack. In federal court, he pleaded guilty to robbing an NYPD officer’s firearm and discharging the firearm at NYPD officers during the course of the robbery. In state court, he pleaded guilty to three counts of aggravated assault on a police officer, two counts of second-degree criminal possession of a weapon and one count of reckless endangerment.

Camovic will likely face 30 years in prison when sentenced, and, as a Bosnian national illegally in the U.S., he will also face deportation at the end of his sentence.

According to the federal and state investigation, on June 3, 2020, officers Yayon Frantz Jean Pierre and Randy Ramnarine were standing on the corner of Flatbush and Church Avenues when Camovic walked up to Jean Pierre from behind and stabbed him in the neck. He then rushed Ramnarine with the knife and threw it at him.

Jean Pierre fired at the defendant and then tripped and Camovic then struggled with him for control of his gun. After taking the gun, Camovic fired at Ramnarine, striking him in the hand.  Additional police officers responded to the scene and the Camovic also opened fire on those officers, striking one of those officers in the hand.
 
Two officers were shot, both in the left hand, and recovered. Jean Pierre was treated for the stab wound to his neck. Camovic was hospitalized and treated for multiple gunshot wounds and recovered.

During his attack on the police officers, Camovic repeatedly shouted “Allahu Akbar” that has been used by perpetrators of violent jihadist terror attacks during violent attacks, Breon Peace, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, said, adding that prior to the attack, Camovic had a significant volume of radical jihadist propaganda.

“With this guilty plea, Camovic admitted robbing a police officer’s gun and shooting that gun during an extremely violent attack on officers keeping the city safe during a public emergency,” Peace said.

“Inspired by terrorists, the defendant viciously attacked officers, stabbing one officer in the neck and shooting another in the hand. Protecting our community from terrorist attacks will always be a priority of this Office, and we will bring to justice those who commit such reprehensible acts against the community and against our law enforcement partners.”

Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez said the case highlighted the “incredible dangers” faced by police officers working to protect neighborhoods, saying “we have no tolerance for anyone who attempts to do them harm.”

“In outrageous acts of violence, this defendant stabbed a police officer in the neck as he stood on the corner, and then shot his partner and a responding officer. Today’s guilty plea and the significant sentence this defendant faces will ensure he is held accountable for this vicious and unprovoked attack.”

Camovic is expected to be sentenced on August 4, 2022, at which time he faces 30 years in prison.

Anna Bradley-Smith

Anna Bradley-Smith is Brooklyn-based reporter with bylines in NBC, VICE, Slate and others. Follow her on Twitter @annabradsmith.

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