Man shot in Crown Heights blocks from J’Ouvert route, police say

A man was shot Monday morning nearly two hours into and several blocks away from the annual J’Ouvert festival in Crown Heights, the NYPD said.

The man, 25, was shot once in the lower back after a visible argument with the unidentified suspect, police said. The shooting took place outside 706 Nostrand Ave., about six blocks east of the parade route, around 7:30 a.m., police said.

The suspect, who fled eastbound on Prospect Place on foot, was caught on surveillance video holding a gun and running after a man on the street.

Police could not immediately confirm the motive behind the shooting or whether the incident involved any J’Ouvert celebrants.

The victim was transported to Kings County Hospital Center in critical condition.

The annual Carnival-style street celebration held ahead of the West Indian Day Parade had been underway with heightened security since 6 a.m., with revelers gathering at Grand Army Plaza, and traveling along Flatbush Avenue, Empire Boulevard, Nostrand Avenue and Midwood Street.

The parade, in previous years, has been marked with violence, including the 2017 biting of a police officer and stabbing of a 22-year-old man and the 2015 shooting fatality of Carey Gabay, an aide to Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

Security at the 2018 parade route followed a tactic similar to that of New Year’s Eve, the NYPD said. Paradegoers passed through metal detectors at 13 security checkpoints before entering the route.

With Nicole Brown