An off-duty corrections officer is being hailed as a hero for stopping a Queens gunman who fired shots at a gathering Sunday evening.
The incident left both the corrections officer and the shooting suspect, a 23-year-old man, hospitalized with injuries, but they are expected to make recoveries, according to Chief of Patrol Jeffrey Maddrey.
Meanwhile, detectives are still working to piece together the full details of the shooting, and are searching for a second suspect involved in the gun violence.
Law enforcement sources said the trouble began at about 8 p.m. on July 3, when the perpetrator arrived at the corner of 214th Place and Jamaica Avenue in Queens Village – where a crowd had been gathered to celebrate the Independence Day weekend.
Not long after arriving, Maddrey said, the perpetrator pulled out a gun and pointed it at the crowd. Nearby, however, was the off-duty corrections officer, who saw the gunman, then drew his own firearm and engaged the suspect.
Within seconds, gunshots rang out, leaving the suspect shot three times and the off-duty officer struck in the leg.
Officers from the 105th Precinct responded to the incident. EMS rushed the officer to North Shore University Hospital and the victim to Jamaica Hospital for treatment of their injuries.
Later, according to Maddrey, a third individual believed to have been wounded in the shooting sought treatment at a local hospital.
Police are now searching for a second perpetrator involved in the gun violence. The investigation remains ongoing, with charges against the wounded suspect still pending.
But according to Mayor Eric Adams, the 23-year-old male shooter shouldn’t have been on the streets at all. Hizzoner said the unidentified suspect had two open prior arrests, including one for armed robbery, and has been out on the streets for six months while awaiting sentencing.
“This is a pattern that continues to play out across the landscape of our city,” Adams said at a press conference Sunday evening. “Too many bad people carrying guns and back on our streets without any repercussions for their actions.”
The mayor again urged the “other parts of the criminal justice system” — judges and prosecutors — to step up their efforts to keep suspects charged with gun-related offenses off the streets while awaiting trial and/or sentencing.
Meanwhile, anyone with information regarding the Queens shooting can call Crime Stoppers at 800-577-TIPS (for Spanish, dial 888-57-PISTA). You can also submit tips online at crimestoppers.nypdonline.org, or on Twitter @NYPDTips. All calls and messages are kept confidential.