Andrea Rebello, the Hofstra University sorority girl who died early Friday morning in a botched robbery and shootout in her off-campus home, was killed by a bullet to the head fired by a cop — not the intruder, who was using Rebello as a human shield.
Nassau County Police made the shocking revelation at a news conference today. There was previously confusion over who fired the shot that killed Rebello.
An officer fired eight rounds, seven of which hit the suspect and one that hit Rebello in the head, police said. Police said the officer that fired the fatal shots is a former NYPD cop who has been with the Nassau department for 12 years.
According to the New York Post, the officer spent seven-plus years on the NYPD was a recipient of the medal of honor.
The suspect, identified as a recent parolee, 30-year-old Dalton Smith, also died. It’s believed he entered the home where Rebello lived — with her twin sister and other roommates — through an unlocked door. The masked, armed intruder forced the twin sisters, plus another woman and man, upstairs at gunpoint demanding money and jewelry.
He sent one woman on an ATM run, demanding she return with cash within eight minutes or he would execute one of the hostages. Instead, the freed hostage called 911, and police descended on the home. Police say Smith sent Andrea’s twin sister Jessica out to tell the cops there was no problem, but she fled outside and reported there was a gunman.
Two cops entered the home and headed upstairs, where one spotted Smith holding Andrea Rebello in a headlock at gunpoint. Police say Smith aimed a gun at the officer, who fired eight times. Smith, packing a loaded 9mm, failed to squeeze off even one shot.
Smith was identified by fingerprint records. He had a long criminal history and was paroled in February after a nine-year sentence for first-degree robbery. According to the New York Times, there was a warrant out for his arrest, issued April 25 when he missed his scheduled check-in with a parole officer.