Heart detective dating
As a police officer, he was happily assigned to his home borough: the notorious 41st precinct, fittingly called “Fort Apache.” The neighborhood was something of an amusement park for depraved criminals. It was the like the Wild West, but 10 times worse,” said Friedman, who even investigated his own mother’s mugging and went after a mobster’s son who shot and wounded his brother Stu, a transit cop. While driving home with a date, he heard two gunshots, and two guys fell on the hood of his car at 105th Street and First Avenue.
Shootings, robberies and arson were daily fare, and drug dealing could have been considered the official sport of the burned-out hood. One had been stabbed and the other had been shot and stabbed.
But, before they entered, a very nervous Fernandez — who wasn’t exactly a Boy Scout himself — whipped out a .38-caliber Smith & Wesson snub-nosed revolver.
“Nice f - - king gun,” he quipped, letting Friedman know he could protect himself.
In 1975, the historic Fraunces Tavern in lower Manhattan was bombed by Puerto Rican terrorist group FALN, killing four and injuring 43.Then 34, he was heavily sedated for two weeks, and doctors said he only survived because he was in such pristine physical shape. I can’t move an inch in any direction without feeling a tremendous amount of pain. Friedman took years to fully recover and slowly eased into civilian life. I’ve seen people with their arms cut off, legs cut off, body parts. I could go out and eat pizza after all of this,” said Friedman, who now spends most of his days working on home-improvement projects. It was devastating.” Adding insult to injury, he was seeing seven women — all of whom showed up at the hospital. But on closer inspection, I realized that I’d been dating these women concurrently over the last year, and they all picked the same time to visit me,” said Friedman. “She must have had a good sense of humor.” She moved in with Friedman and helped him recover. Ralph Friedman has taken more than a few bad guys off the street.
The former NYPD detective has arrested more than 2,000 criminals.And he earned the Combat Cross, the department’s second-highest honor, for shooting dead a deranged man who shot a teenager for calling him a “cheap bastard.” In his book, Friedman reflects on the bygone era, which could be both frustrating and freewheeling.