Cop Who Denied CPR to Asthmatic Girl is from the 84th Precinct

Today we learn that the scoundrel who smirked, “I don’t do CPR” as 11 year old Briana Ojeda lay dying of an asthma attack Sunday in Cobble Hill, has been identified as  NYPD officer Alfonso Mendez from our very own 84th Precinct.  He has been suspended and faces termination:

WSJ: Law-enforcement officials with knowledge of the investigation say Mr. Mendez, 30 years old, though trained in CPR, admitted he wasn’t confident enough in his skills to perform the procedure.

Mr. Mendez traveled behind the mother’s car, providing an escort of sorts to the hospital. However, when they arrived, Mr. Mendez allegedly drove off and never reported the incident as NYPD regulations require, police officials said. The girl was pronounced dead at the hospital.

After the mother went to the news media with allegations of inaction by an NYPD officer, detectives from the NYPD’s Internal Affairs unit showed the mother pictures of every officer in the 76th Precinct where the incident took place. However, she wasn’t able to identify any of the officers as the one she dealt with.

Police said Internal Affairs detectives then expanded their search to include what Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly called on Tuesday the “universe of law enforcement that might be in the area.”

After Internal Affairs identified Mr. Mendez as a suspect they showed his photo to the mother and she identified him as the officer.

Police say that a gasoline charge Mr. Mendez made with an NYPD-issued gas card placed him in the area at the time of the incident. Mr. Mendez is assigned to the 84th precinct in downtown Brooklyn. On the day of the incident he was in traffic court at 139 Flatbush Avenue and was traveling to relieve an officer assigned to a security post on the Brooklyn side of the Brooklyn Bridge when he encountered the girl’s mother, police officials said.

One police official with knowledge of the investigation said Mr. Mendez’s biggest mistake was that he failed to make the proper notifications.

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  • lois

    Uh oh, another lawsuit. But this is an extremely serious situation. I can’t believe this police officer tried to hinder rather than help.

  • caitlin

    this is horrifying.

  • bornhere

    WillowtownCop can back me up on this, but it is routine, I think, for police to notify their command regarding a “pick-up of an aided” (with an explanation about escorting them to LICH). It appears that, for some reason, notification wasn’t made in this case. Argument will likely be made, should this progress to a suit, that the delay made or did not make a difference — people with severe asthma attacks can die even when emergency care is provided in a more timely manner.
    That this is a tragedy goes without saying; that Mendez didn’t advise his command of the pick-up or come forward immediately is not good. Whether his inaction likely made a difference remains to be seen.

  • WillowtownCop

    I hate to Monday morning quarterback, but here is my take on the situation (bearing in mind that my info comes mostly from the Post):

    When he boxed the driver in, he probably saw what he believed to be a hit and run- at that time he did not know that there was a sick child. Once he realized there was a child who was sick, he should have (I would have) put the child in the RMP and taken her as fast as he could to the ER. I don’t know if CPR should have been used in the situation- that would depend on if the child was breathing or not. There was no excuse to say he didn’t know CPR, which isn’t true, and there’s no excuse not to put her in the car. He didn’t have to notify the pct unless he knew when he left that she had died but he was supposed to do some paperwork (an “aided”); he also was supposed to notify the 76 of the parked cars that got hit so they could do a report.

    Leaving and pretending it never happened was the worst thing he could have done. He had the family and the public thinking he could have saved the child and refused to help (nobody really knows if he could have or not). He had Internal Affairs crawling all over putting his coworkers in photo arrays like we were criminals because he didn’t come forward. I can’t imagine him not getting fired over this, but if he doesn’t no one will ever work with him again.

    There is also no excuse for the department not to have us re-certified every year for CPR. We only get certified once in the academy which for many of us was years ago.

  • Arch Stanton

    As the crimes perpetrated against police officers carry heavier penalties… So should crimes perpetrated by police officers carry heavier penalties… what’s fair is fair, I say give him the chair.

  • x

    This is BS. BLS (basic life support) should be recertified every 2 years.

    Shame on the police department for not providing that to their people

  • x

    Bring the officers over to LICH, I’m sure they will gladly recertify all of them.

  • George Earl

    Yes, I am sorry that this woman is no longer with us. But I, as a citizen who has dealt with epilepsy physically and socially for most of his adult life, can see how this entire event took place. In one day in NYC I am sure there are virtually thousands of drug- and alcohol-filled drivers roaring down our streets. And when such cars are stopped, the average cop cannot immediately tell what the insident consists of. And yes, I know police officers. Was this woman wearing any kind of MedicAlert bracelet or neck chain? Did she have a medical ID posted in her car or in her pockets? If not, she most certainly should have. The officer may have been just plain afraid.Then too, was his training all that sufficient? But I do advise anybody with physical disabilities to carry an ID that explains things simply. Even the best doctors recommend this!

  • JM

    George…you do realize that it was the woman’s young daughter that died from the asthma attack and NOT the adult driver right? There were 2 lucid adults with the child who told the officer what the problem was, not to mention, by then I’m sure it was quite evident from looking at the poor kid that she was in serious distress.

  • Politically Incorrect?

    If I had a child who suffered from Asthma, I would be sure that the child always travel with appropriate medical devices (enhaler?) and medications. And I would be sure I knew CPR and BLS techniques. Why blame a total stranger. What’s wrong with the mother??????

  • Stickler

    Politically Incorrect?,

    It would be rather alarming if you had a CHILD, let alone one with asthma, because you would not be able to teach them the correct spelling of the word “inhale.”

  • Politically Incorrect?


    Thank goodness it is only my spelling that is off today. Why be so mean about it? Don’t you at least have something to say about the issue at hand — was the cop wrong. Or are you only interested in showing off your orthographic skills.

  • Stickler


    I didn’t realize that there was any doubt that the cop was wrong.

    “However, when they arrived, Mr. Mendez allegedly drove off and never reported the incident as NYPD regulations require, police officials said.”

    That pretty much says it all. You’re falling for the old “blame the victim” routine. Whether or not the mother should have known CPR herself is irrelevant. She was trying to get her kid to the hospital and the officer did not do his utmost to help save the child’s life….and then skulked away.