PBA reaction to guilty pleas by Ralph Phillips

The State Troopers PBA feels that today’s guilty pleas by Ralph Phillips are, unfortunately, the best possible outcome under the confines of the available sentencing laws. We are extremely disappointed the death penalty is not an option for this cold-blooded killer.

Phillips’ admissions of killing one Trooper and attempting to kill two more Troopers do not reverse the pain and the suffering of these three brave, heroic Troopers and their families. These guilty pleas cannot bring back Trooper Joseph Longobardo, nor will they erase the wounds of Trooper Sean Brown and Trooper Donald Baker Jr.

“Our Troopers bravely and heroically place their lives on the line each and every day, and when one of us is hurt, we all hurt,” said PBA President Daniel M. De Federicis. “The murder of Trooper Longobardo, and the shooting of Trooper Brown and Trooper Baker have ripped so many lives apart and caused an unbelievable amount of pain. Since the death penalty is not an option, we want to see Ralph Phillips spend the rest of his life locked up in prison.”

The PBA continues to support the recovery of Trooper Baker and we send him and his family our best wishes. We keep the family of Trooper Longobardo in our thoughts and prayers, and we will continue to support his family in any way that we can. We are also thankful that Trooper Brown has recovered and returned to full and strenuous duty as a Trooper.

The PBA and its members are calling on the New York State Legislature to enact a death penalty for cop killers that will withstand judicial scrutiny, and we also appreciate that Governor-elect Eliot Spitzer has already stated his support for such a law.

More than 6,000 active and retired, uniformed members of the New York State Police from the rank of Trooper through the rank of Major are represented by the State Troopers PBA.