Slain Jersey City cop Joseph Seals got ‘dozens of handguns’ off streets: chief

The Jersey City cop who was killed on Tuesday was “our leading police officer in removing guns from the street,” the city’s police chief said.

Detective Joseph Seals was a veteran officer who “came up in the South District,” the high-crime area where he was fatally shot ahead of an hours-long shootout that left five people dead inside a grocery store, Police Chief Michael Kelly told reporters.

“Dozens and dozens of handguns he’s responsible for removing from the street,” Kelly said.

“We believe that he was killed while trying to interdict these bad guys.”

Seals, who was married with five kids, joined the Jersey City Police Department in 2006 and was promoted to detective within the past several years, Kelly said.

Two other cops were wounded during the police shootout with the gunmen who stormed the market at 223 Martin Luther King Drive around 12:30 p.m. and held cops at bay for several hours, Kelly said.

Officers Ray Sanchez and Farinella Fernandez were treated and released from the hospital, Kelly said.

One was shot in the shoulder and the other in the body, he said.

Authorities found five bodies inside the store, Kelly said.

“We believe two of them are bad guys. We believe three of them are not and may be civilians that were inside the store,” he said.

Cops also seized a stolen U-Haul vehicle linked to the gunmen “that may contain an incendiary device,” Kelly said.

It’s being examined by the department’s bomb squad, he said.

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