At this point, Abu-Jamal, Cook’s brother, jumped from a nearby taxi that he was driving and shot Faulkner in the back. Faulkner returned fire, seriously wounding Abu-Jamal, who shot the officer four more times at close range as he staggered toward him. Abu-Jamal was quickly arrested and transported to a nearby hospital. He is said to have stated in the emergency room that “I shot the motherfucker, and I hope he dies,” but later denied having implicated himself.

Abu-Jamal, born Wesley Cook, was as a former Black Panther and part-time writer for several African-American publications and drove a cab to make ends meet. He wanted so badly to work for the Daily News that whenever he had an opportunity he would stop by the newsroom to schmooze. I thought that Abu-Jamal was a nice enough guy, but was a little too green and much too willing to inject his politics into what he wrote.

There never was any doubt in my mind that Abu-Jamal, seeing his brother scuffle with Faulkner, had shot the office in the heat of the moment.