Jersey City’s mayor lashed out Monday at residents for memorializing a cop killer.
A temporary memorial was on display in the neighborhood where Lawrence Campbell lived. It included candles and balloons and messages from friends of the man who ambushed 23-year-old officer Melvin Santiago early Sunday at a drugstore.
“There are people in every single community who just don’t value life and this is highlighted by a situation like this,” Mayor Steven Fulop said.
Campbell’s wife Angelique said she is sorry for Santiago’s family, but that her husband should have killed more cops in self defense.
A significantly smaller memorial to the slain officer outside the Walgreens where he was killed drew mourners on Monday.
“I heard the news this morning and it brought tears to my eyes,” truck driver Van Thomas said. “I couldn’t believe it, I couldn’t understand it. This is the type of society we have now with guys whose minds are not right, and it’s a huge wake-up call for everybody.”
Campbell inexplicably assaulted an armed store security guard and snatched his gun. He then approached someone, apologized for his conduct and said to watch the news because he was “going to be famous.”
Campbell waited for officers to arrive and shot Santiago with the guard’s weapon. Other officers returned fire, killing Campbell.