Lawrence Byrne, the oldest brother of a slain New York City police officer and a former federal prosecutor, had been appointed deputy commissioner for legal matters at the NYPD.
Police Commissioner Bill Bratton announced the appointment on Thursday.
“Deputy Commissioner Byrne brings over 25 years of legal expertise to the NYPD leadership team, Bratton said. “He not only brings a great wealth of knowledge ranging from white collar crimes to First Amendment and media litigation, but quite a proud family legacy as well.
Byrne began his career as a federal prosecutor in 1988 with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, and served with the Criminal Division of the U.S. Justice Department in Washington, DC.
In private practice, Byrne has experience in internal investigations, trial and appellate court, and matters involving antitrust, securities, bankruptcy and class action defense.
Byrne’s brother, Edward, was a 22-year-old rookie with the NYPD’s 103rd Precinct in 1988 when he was murdered in South Jamaica by four paid killers as he was protecting a witness in a narcotics prosecution.
His death often is cited as the turning point in the late 1980s in the city’s battle against the illegal drug trade.
His killers were last denied parole in late 2012.
Howard “Pappy” Mason, who ordered the hit, is serving life with no possibility of parole at a super maximum security federal prison in Colorado.
Byrne’s father, Matt, served on the NYPD for 22 years.
Lawrence Byrne is succeeding Douglass Maynard, who held the post since 2013 and is returning to the private sector.