It’s been nearly a quarter-century since Edward Byrne, a 22-year-old rookie NYPD officer, was gunned down in cold blood while guarding the Queens home of a drug-case witness.
Now, as The Post’s Phil Messing reports, his four killers are coming up for their first parole hearing.
Many may have forgotten this heinous crime — which epitomized the crack-fueled lawlessness that then ruled the city’s streets.
But the parole board, which will hear their plea for freedom in November, must heed the urging of the trial judge that they are “not fit to live in our society” and should never be paroled.
When Byrne was shot in the head five times at close range on Feb. 26, 1988, while sitting in a patrol car at Inwood Street and 107th Avenue in South Jamaica, it was national news.
Then-President Ronald Reagan personally called Byrne’s parents and vowed that the young cop’s “death will not have been in vain.” His successor, George H.W. Bush, displayed Byrne’s badge at the White House.