NYPD Cop Kills Himself, Leaves Pension To Girlfriend Instead Of Wife

Before his suicide, an NYPD officer removed his wife (pictured) from his death benefits.

Brooklyn, NY – A Brooklyn police officer cut his estranged wife off from his death-benefit policy just months before he died, leaving the cash to his police lieutenant girlfriend instead.

New York Police Department Community Affairs Officer Mike Smith, 48, and his wife, Elizabeth Morehouse, separated in 2014, but the couple never formally divorced, the New York Post reported.

“We remained friends, and both loved our daughter,” Morehouse said.

Officer Smith and his Russian-born girlfriend, New York Police Lieutenant Zoya Golubeva, 37, were living together at his Manhattan Beach apartment when their on-and-off relationship came to an abrupt end on March 7, 2017.

Lt. Golubeva told Officer Smith she was leaving him, and she and her parents began packing up her belongings, the New York Post reported.

Officer Smith wrote her a brief note and placed it in her hand before he walked towards the front door.

“I love you more than you’ll ever know,” the note said.

He then stepped into the apartment foyer, just feet away from Lt. Golubeva and her parents, and shot himself in the forehead.

According to an autopsy report, a photo of Lt. Golubeva was found lying next to Officer Smith’s body.

Eleven months before his death, Officer Smith, a 23-year veteran of the department, had changed beneficiary on his pension fund from Morehouse to Lt. Golubeva.

“That money should go to my daughter – he’s her father,” Morehouse said of Officer Smith’s $810,000 death benefit. She said she was aware that her estranged husband had made the change, because she had opened the officer’s mail after he moved out.

Officer Smith named Morehouse as beneficiary of his $250,000 life insurance policy. He had no other assets and didn’t leave a will.

Officers are not legally required to tell their spouse when they change beneficiaries, former New York City Employees’ Retirement System executive director John Murphy told the New York Post.

“This kind of thing has gone on forever,” Murphy explained. “They fall in love with someone else and want to leave the money to them.”

According to the New York Post, Morehouse can seek to collect up to a third of Officer Smith’s pension benefits under state law, regardless of the officer’s wishes.

She said she planned to file a claim in the amount of $270,000, but that Lt. Golubeva can contest it.

Officer Smith’s family claimed that, shortly after Officer Smith’s death, Lt. Golubeva told them that she felt the money should go to Officer Smith’s 14-year-old daughter.

“She called it ‘blood money,’ and didn’t want any of it,” Officer Smith’s sister, Kathleen Carrano told the New York Post.

The lieutenant and her family had often socialized with Officer Smith’s siblings, but no one has heard from her since shortly after his suicide, Carrano said.

Officer Smith’s family said that Lt. Golubeva has not indicated she would turn any of the money over, and claimed she also has not responded to their repeated requests that she return some Korean War medals that had been awarded to Officer Smith’s late father.

“They’re really significant to our family,” Carrano said. “I don’t know what meaning they would have for her.”

Officer Smith had filed for retirement just days before his death, and was looking forward to getting a dog and spending time at the beach, she added.

He had also helped fellow officers struggling with suicide in the past, Morehouse told the New York Post.

When asked whether she planned to keep the war medals and Officer Smith’s retirement benefits, Lt. Golubeva said, “I’ll have to get back to you,” and disconnected the call, according to the New York Post.

Comments
No. 1-15
IFO14
IFO14

The wife fails to disclose that she was having a long term affair with a married man with 3 children for many years before her husband moved out in 2014. Her affair partner abandoned his own kids both physically and financially since moving in with Morehouse in 2014. Their actions were abhorrent and have proven them to be nothing short of morally bankrupt. Officer Smith taking his life is such a tragedy and so very sad but Morehouse is not being forthright by feigning innocence and confusion with the situation. Possibly her demonstrated lack of morality and family values played a part in her husband's decision. May he rest in peace.

LEOWIDOW
LEOWIDOW

Don’t judge them man he’s dead and already has been. As to whether the lover will return “blood money” as to use her words is a point of conscience and most New York women law enforcement to be included are high maintenance, shallow and without regard to a child who’s father killed himself. She’ll keep it. The war medals..... call the Department of Veterans affairs as she has no legal right to keep them and they will force her to give them back to Smith’s family. Our family had to do just that. We got them back.

61mouse
61mouse

How could he afford to live at a Manhattan Beach apartment on officers pay

Burgers Allday
Burgers Allday

Is it just me, or do these benefits numbers seem ridiculously high?

Mom2Boys
Mom2Boys

If you care about your Minor children, always always set up a family trust and make them your beneficiary. It would take a very moral and honorable person to walk away from $800,000. She may not have it in her.

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