NYC SHOOTINGS: Man shot in Times Square fracas, Harrison blames gangs for half of gun violence incidents

Detectives look for clues at mass shooting at 15 Albany Avenue in Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, part of gang violence in the city. Chief Rodney Harrison discuss the case this morning. (Photo by Lloyd Mitchell)

A 20-year-old man was shot during what may have been a dispute on West 42nd Street in Midtown, a block from nearly empty Times Square, on Tuesday night, police officials said.

This follows several days of relative quiet as cooler temperatures keep much of the violence tamped down. In addition, aggressive moves against gangs, especially in Brooklyn, have kept pressure on those crews to keep violence in check.

In this latest shooting, at 8:14 p.m. on Dec. 1, a man pulled a gun on the victim in front of 360 West 42nd Street and shot him in the buttocks as he tried to flee the attacker. The victim was rushed to Bellevue Hospital in stable condition.

The assailant was described as a Black man with a dark complexion and dark dread locks, who was last seen wearing a black jacket, blue jeans and black sneakers and fleeing on foot southbound from the corner of West 33rd Street and 7 Avenue.

 Surveillance photos, taken from the incident were provided by the NYPD.

Anyone with information in regard to this shooting is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website at WWW.NYPDCRIMESTOPPERS.COM, or on Twitter @NYPDTips. All calls are strictly confidential.

Half of shootings gang-related

Chief of Detectives Rodney Harrison said in an interview on WPIX-11 Wednesday morning that about 50% of the more than 1,400 shootings this year are gang related. The shootings also contributed to a 37.2% increase in homicides this year.

Harrison pointed to the long-term closure of courts during the pandemic as a factor complicating the NYPD’s efforts to combat gang shootings.

“The courts being closed because of COVID-19 made things difficult for us and the pandemic has taken a toll on the NYPD as a whole,” Harrison said this morning. “Combating the violence has been a struggle with much of it in Brooklyn. Of those 1,400 shootings, 50 percent is gang [related], and it will be precision policing that will get them off the streets.”

Harrison called the court and prosecution backlogs “problematic” and he said it has been difficult to get some criminals to trial. However, he said his detectives have been working to identify those committing the most heinous crimes to get them off the streets.

Harrison cited the Nov. 22 shooting of seven young people at a sweet sixteen party on Albany Avenue in Bedford-Stuyvesant, in which a 20-year-old woman visiting from Virginia was killed.

 “Several individuals walked into the place with firearms and began shooting, then to the lobby and then the third floor where they shot several more people,” Harrison said. “I’m optimistic that the 79th Precinct detectives and Brooklyn North Homicide [Squad] will identify those responsible.”

He added that he believe the investigation was in the “right direction” and “we are looking at a couple of people.”

Shots fired in Brooklyn

The NYPD is seeking a gunman wanted for firing shots at a store window on Nov. 12. in Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn.

Police say that at 6 p.m., a man fired multiple rounds through the window of a store at 494 Marcus Garvey Blvd. No injuries were reported in that shooting.

The individual is described as a man with a dark complexion in his 20s with a thin build and facial hair. He was last seen wearing a gray hoodie sweater, black jacket, light blue ripped jeans and white sneakers.

Surveillance photo of the attacker was provided by the NYPD after the incident.

Staten Island murder

In an unrelated case, police are seeking the assailants in two vehicles wanted for the shooting murder of a 52-year-old woman innocent bystander on Nov. 16 in Staten Island.

Investigators from the 120th Precinct say that at 6:58 p.m., an unknown assailant fired shots at at group standing in front of 225 Park Hill Ave. in Mariners Harbor, Staten Island. One of those shots struck Sue Doe, 52, of Park Hill Avenue, in the head.

She was rushed to Staten Island University Hospital and died on Nov. 25.

Police described the vehicle as a white 2019 Kia Sorento. Only an hour earlier, two vehicles engaged in a gun battle on Forest Avenue, only blocks from this incident. It was unclear if the two incidents were linked. Nobody was hit in the earlier incident.

Surveillance photo of Kia was provided by detectives.

Police also provided photos of the two vehicles from the earlier incident.

Anyone with information in regard to any of the aforementioned shootings is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 888-57-PISTA (74782). You can also submit tips online at nypdcrimestoppers.com, or on Twitter @NYPDTips. All calls and messages are kept confidential.