Brooklyn, NY – A gang member who received a slap on the wrist after dragging a New York police detective with a stolen vehicle and nearly killing him five years ago has been arrested yet again for leading police on another high-speed chase in another stolen car.
The violent 2017 encounter left 38-year-old New York Police Department (NYPD) Detective Dalsh Veve, a married father of a young daughter, with catastrophic brain damage.
He now relies on a wheelchair, requires around-the clock medical care, and cannot speak.
Despite having 11 arrests on his criminal history by the age of 15, reputed Crips member Justin Murrell was sentenced to just 16 months to four years in juvenile detention for nearly killing Det. Veve, the New York Daily News reported.
“Ten years was the max he could have gotten and he didn’t even get half of that,” the detective’s wife, Esther Veve, said at the time. “I don’t think any time would have justified what he did, so for him not to have gotten the maximum was even worse…It was a slap in the face.”
Murrell was released onto parole in March of 2020 at the age of 18, the New York Post reported.
By May of 2021, he was arrested for allegedly fleeing from police in a stolen vehicle and crashing into several parked vehicles in East New York.
Murrell, now 20, showed up to his court hearing in that pending matter on March 28, at which point police arrested him in connection with yet another high-speed pursuit involving another stolen car, the New York Post reported.
Police said the most recent incident was also tied to a string of vehicle thefts at Kenny and LaGuardia airports in February.
According to court records, a judge promptly released Murrell without bond yet again, despite his record of parole violations and criminal offenses, the New York Post reported.
His next court hearing is scheduled to take place on May 24.
Esther Veve shared her thoughts on New York City’s “broken” criminal justice system in an op-ed published in the New York Daily News on April 2.
“Murrell served just 14 months in prison beyond time served for what he did to my husband — a sentence that was as pathetic as the current criminal justice system in New York that has prompted me to write this,” the detective’s wife said.
“At the time of his sentencing, Murrell had 11 prior arrests under his belt. He was just 15,” she added. “Clearly, there were no lessons learned because there were no real consequences to his lawless behavior.”
While her husband continues to face “enormous cognitive challenges” while “confined to a wheelchair,” Murrell has been given free reign to continue “preying on New Yorkers” and to commit new offenses, Esther Veve wrote.
She called for modification to New York’s new bail reform laws, which currently bar judges from “setting bail in stolen-car cases, no matter how often you are caught.”
The detective’s wife argued that minor adjustments need to be made to the laws to allow judges to have more discretion when dealing with individuals who present “a clear danger to society.”
“Clearly, the current system is broken,” she wrote.
The New York City Police Benevolent Association (PBA) blasted the career criminal’s repeated releases in multiple tweets on March 30, describing the lack of consequences for Murrell’s behavior as “insanity.”
THIS. IS. INSANITY.
Jun '17: Drags a cop behind a stolen car, paralyzing him
Jan '19: Sentenced to just 16 MONTHS
May '21: High-speed chase in stolen car…WHILE ON PAROLE…RELEASED AGAIN
Feb '22: ANOTHER stolen car chase!
Mar '22: Arrested & RELEASED AGAIN! pic.twitter.com/hD5RkeyGRS
— NYC PBA (@NYCPBA) March 30, 2022
“While the attempted cop-killer is free to terrorize the city, our hero brother, his courageous wife and their young daughter persevere through every day,” the PBA added. “They deserve better. All New Yorkers deserve better.”
The New York Police Department (NYPD) tweeted a photo of Det. Veve and his daughter the same day.
“On 6/3/17, Det. Dalsh Veve was catastrophically injured while stopping a stolen vehicle. Today, as always, we remember the continued sacrifice of Det. Veve & his family,” the PBA wrote. “His assailant, who was has been arrested twice in the last 10 months, including 2 days ago, remains free.”
On 6/3/17, Det. Dalsh Veve was catastrophically injured while stopping a stolen vehicle. Today, as always, we remember the continued sacrifice of Det. Veve & his family.
His assailant, who was has been arrested twice in the last 10 months, including 2 days ago, remains free. pic.twitter.com/LTW3ejS71n
— NYPD NEWS (@NYPDnews) March 30, 2022
Det. Veve, who was born in Haiti, was one of multiple NYPD officers who responded to a report of shots fired in the area of East 53rd Street and Tilden Avenue on June 3, 2017, according to the New York Daily News.
During the course of the investigation, he spotted Murrell behind the wheel of a stolen vehicle, WCBS reported.
But as he was speaking with the 15-year-old, Murrell suddenly stomped on the accelerator and rammed into him.
Det. Veve desperately clung to the fleeing vehicle as it hit speeds of nearly 60 miles per hour, the New York Daily News reported.
Although he was dragged for several blocks, Det. Veve managed to fire at least one round, striking the teen in the jaw.
The detective ultimately fell from the fleeing car, suffering catastrophic injuries to his head and body.
Murrell and his two passengers took off from the scene on foot to seek medical treatment for his gunshot wound.
BREAKING: Justin Murrell, who allegedly dragged officer Dalsh Veve with a car, has been indicted on attempted murder and assault pic.twitter.com/TTsl2QEdEE
— myles miller (@MylesMill) June 16, 2017
Det. Veve was kept in a medically-induced coma for weeks, WCBS reported at the time.
Murrell was initially charged as an adult for the offense of attempted murder, but a jury ultimately convicted him of first-degree assault, the New York Daily News reported.
During the sentencing hearing in January of 2019, Esther Veve told the court that her husband will never fully recover from the injuries Murrell caused, and that he sometimes still does not recognize her or their daughter, the New York Post reported.
“I’m speaking now because my husband is not able to speak for himself,” she said. “Eighteen months later, we are still trying to put the pieces of our life together…There have been moments when he can’t recognize his little [4-year-old] girl, and you can imagine how that breaks our hearts.”
Justin Murrell has been sentenced to 16 months to 4 years in prison. Murrell was 15 when in June 2017, he dragged NYPD Detective Dalsh Veve a few blocks with a Stolen Vehicle during a pursuit in East Flatbush, Brooklyn.
(Photo: Copyright MIDWOOD FLATBUSH NEWS) pic.twitter.com/rgclFidTj3
The lenient sentence handed down by Judge Ruth Shillingford immediately prompted outrage among law enforcement officers, prosecutors, and their supporters.
“[The judge] spit on every shield on every chest in the city,” Police Benevolent Association President Patrick Lynch told reporters outside the courtroom. “She spit on our hero…And she spit on that family…How dare she?”
“I’ve been a police officer for 35 years. I have never been so angry in my entire life,” Lynch said. “I’ve never sat in a courtroom where a judge sat and looked at a police officer confined to a wheelchair, heard the [wife] speak of how their lives have changed, talked about a 4-year-old that will not feel the hug of her father, and then say this mutt should be treated as a child!”
“His decisions were adult decisions,” Lynch continued. “The results changed lives. I warn the people of this city, in four years, this potential cop killer will be back on the street.”
Lynch’s statements came just over one year before Murrell’s actual release.