A New York police officer survived a bullet to the back thanks to his bulletproof vest in what has been described as a "Christmas miracle" by NYPD officials.

The incident occurred at around 9 p.m. on Christmas Eve in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, when officers answered a series of 911 calls from a mother and daughter in distress.  

The two women feared that the daughter's boyfriend was going to come to their home and "shoot the place up", according to NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea. 

Shea said that officers had arrived at the Crown Heights home and had begun interviewing the mother and daughter when the suspect turned up and began firing at the officers. 

One officer, later named as Connor Boalick,  was hit in the back during the flurry of bullets, but his bulletproof vest prevented the bullet from piercing his skin and doing serious damage.

Shea lauded the bravery of his officers after reviewing bodycam footage from the incident. 

"You see incredible bravery by the officers," he said. "You see the girlfriend point out and next thing you hear is shots being fired." 

Mayor Bill de Blasio called the incident a Christmas miracle. 

"I would say that somebody is absolutely looking out for us here in the NYPD tonight," de Blasio said.

Two officers fired a total of seven shots at the 20-year-old suspect after the unnamed officer had been hit but missed with each shot. They gave pursuit of the suspect and apprehended him after a short chase across one or two blocks. 

The suspect, named as William Moss, was charged with attempted murder, assault, criminal use of a firearm, criminal possession of a weapon and reckless endangerment on Friday morning. 

Meanwhile, the officer was discharged from hospital on Friday morning after he was treated for his injuries, according to CNN

De Blasio said in a statement that two innocent women's lives were saved by the bravery of the NYPD officer who stood between them and a bullet.