Christopher “C.J.” Sullivan, a veteran New York Post crime reporter who spent more than two decades covering murder and mayhem on the Big Apple streets, died Sunday after a lengthy battle with liver cancer. He was 66.
The veteran journalist, who also spent nearly 30 years working as a court officer at Brooklyn Supreme Court, passed away at the Mt. Sinai Medical Center in Manhattan due to complications from the disease.
The father of two was first diagnosed with cancer eight years ago, his sister, Kathleen Sullivan Fierro, told The Post on Monday.
A towering presence at 6 feet 5, C.J. was renowned among colleagues as a hard-hitting, old-school street reporter. Loved ones recalled him as a “very generous hard-ass” who had a heart of gold and a wicked sense of humor.
“He was really a memorable character. He was very funny. He loved to talk, he loved to tell stories. He loved to have a good time,” Sullivan Fierro said.
“He had a very quick wit. He always had a reply, always had something to say — and it was usually pretty funny.”
A native New Yorker, Christopher Joseph Sullivan – known to many simply as C.J. — was born in Yonkers and raised in the Bronx by his parents, William and Kathleen Sullivan. He was the youngest of four siblings, including sisters Kathleen and Rosemary and his twin brother, William.
“He often said growing up on Bainbridge Avenue in the Bronx was the best preparation for anything,” Sullivan Fierro said.
C.J. had spent the last decade of his life living in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn.
A longtime Postie, C.J. worked part-time on the night shift for nearly 18 years, mostly covering Gotham’s breaking crime news, high-profile arrests and arraignments.
By day, C.J. was a full-time civil court clerk at the Kings County Supreme Court — a position he held for 29 years before retiring in 2018.
Having previously written for the New York Press and Brooklyn Bridge magazine, C.J.’s break with The Post came after he pitched and wrote a story of a stripper who was suing her plastic surgeon over a botched procedure.
“She wanted a more shapelier backside and the doctor put breast implants in her booty,” Sullivan Fierro recalled of the article, published in June 2000 with the headline: “Stripper claims butt-head doc made career hit bottom.”
It was the start of a long-running side hustle that ended up filling the pages of The Post with tales of corruption, crime and scandal across the Big Apple.
Known for wearing an oversize blazer while out on assignment, C.J. would often take notes with a pen and skinny reporter’s pad.
He loved staking out his story subjects and would sometimes take his two now-adult daughters, Olivia and Luisa, along for the ride, his sister said.
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