By Sean Dobbin
Rochester Democrat & Chronicle
A retired Rochester Police Department captain who is now a police officer in Wyoming County shot and killed his son Saturday morning after he mistakenly thought he was an intruder, according to the New York State Police.
Police say Michael Leach, 59, of Rochester, shot and killed 37-year-old Matthew S. Leach, around 12:51 a.m. Saturday.
Police from the Town of Webb responded to the Clark Beach Motel for a 911 call from Michael Leach, who said he shot what he believed to be an intruder.
Michael Leach is employed as a police officer in Perry, Wyoming County.
He was taken by ambulance to St. Lukes Hospital in Utica where he remains for a medical issue, State Police said.
Rochester police Capt. Peter Leach - Michael Leach's brother - is in charge of the special detail currently policing the city's downtown area. Both men are sons of former Rochester Police Chief Delmar Leach, who served from 1981-85.
In November 1975, Michael Leach, then a 22-year-old officer in the Rochester Police Department, shot and killed Denise Hawkins, an 18-year-old who was coming toward him with a knife in the basement of an apartment building.
The incident led to extensive protests from black community leaders and a grand jury investigation. The shooting was ruled to be justified.
The Rochester Police Department this afternoon issued a statement expressing "its deepest sympathy to the Leach family over the tragic loss of Matthew Leach... We ask that everyone keep the Leach family in their thoughts and prayers."
The investigation is continuing in conjunction with Acting Herkimer County District Attorney Jeff Carpenter.