NYPD members from LI recall Statue of Liberty response

Posted: Updated:

Three NYPD officers from Long Island were in the national spotlight on July Fourth after helping end a standoff at the Statue of Liberty.

Detective Robert Stosch was one of the three officers who climbed the base of the Statue of Liberty to rescue a protester. 

"Our unit does this every day,” he said. “We rescue people from elevated platforms constantly. They're just not always on national landmarks."

Therese Okoumou told police she climbed the statue to protest President Donald Trump’s immigration policy. Multiple law enforcement agencies responded.

Stosch and Detective John McKenna, also from Long Island, were among 16 members of the NYPD involved in the rescue. McKenna helped coordinate efforts with U.S. Parks Police.

"We have to rescue that person from themselves when they put themselves in that position,” says McKenna. “We have police officers’ safety at risk."

Lt. Michael McGuiness, also from Long Island, says multiple NYPD units assisted in the successful rescue.

"Got a ride from our Harbor Unit out to Liberty Island. We had the support of our Aviation Unit – providing us with real-time imagery of what she was doing above our heads," says McGuiness.

After several hours, the NYPD got Okoumou down and handed her off to the U.S. Parks Police, who took her into custody.

"It took a lot of people working together to accomplish this and make sure no one got hurt," said McKenna.

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