‘They’re using our children as camouflage’: Brooklyn gang shootout injures one and shocks community

Governor Andrew Cuomo officially cut ribbon on new Terminal B of LaGuardia Airport.(Photo by Todd Maisel)

A gang shooting in Brooklyn left a 27-year-old man shot in the leg and scattered shells for more than a block.

The shooting victim, not identified, was taken to Kings County Hospital in stable condition with non-life-threatening injuries.

“They’re using our children as camouflage,” exclaimed one angry resident of Bed Stuy in reaction to the shooting.

Residents of the Bedford Stuyvesant community were shocked, but not surprised by the amount of spent shells in the street in this unusual 5:10 p.m.daylight shooting that started at 153 Marcus Garvey Blvd at Pulaski Street as children played and elderly walked on the streets. A nearby play yard sponsored by the Northeast Brooklyn Tenant/Block Association was filled with families with children playing and enjoying the warm temperatures.

Children play in a yard adjacent to where most of the shooting occurred. Photo by Todd Maisel)

“These people don’t care what is going on around them, they just want to kill each other,” one resident said. No witnesses wanted to be identified fearing gang reprisals in this embattled community. Gang shootings are up dramatically over the past few weeks as police have been busy with demonstrations around the city and protecting property from looters and burglars.

“I heard pop, pop, pop, and the red car racing by and people were ducking,” another man said. “Then a guy was laying on the floor – he was shot in the leg. Nobody really wanted to get involved in that.”

Police officials say assailants in a red four-door Honda shot the man on the street, but couldn’t account for the many spent shells that stretched from Pulaski to DeKalb – several parked cars were hit by bullets. No other injuries were reported. Few witnesses were willing to step forward. Police say it’s possible others were involved.

Cops stand next to play yard in view of the shooting scene. (Photo by Todd Maisel)

Police sealed off Marcus Garvey to traffic, causing buses to back up past Pulaski. Evidence was marked on Pulaski, in front of the Roosevelt Houses NYCHA development. Cops closed the streets as investigators searched for evidence and reviewed security video.

“My children were playing over here and we heard the shots – we just stayed in the yard back here,” one woman said. “I don’t want to get involved in that.”

One resident with her baby carriage and a second child in tow was more non-nonchalant about it.

“I just want to get through the street – it’s gonna rain and I don’t want to go around the block to get through,” she said. “These people do this all the time. The cops just gotta let us through.”

Some cops were more resigned to the situation, saying it is the beginning of a “long summer.”

“This is happening more and more, and the city is talking about cutting the budget,” one cop sighed. “I just don’t know what is going to happen this summer – it’s going to be pretty hot. This is why so many guys are taking retirement now – they don’t think it’s worth sticking around when people are throwing bricks at you.”

Spent shells litter Marcus Garvey Blvd. (Photo by Todd Maisel)

On Tuesday, Police Benevolent Association President Patrick Lynch warned that it was the “wrong time to be cutting police budgets,” and called “defunding” a “slogan on a piece of cardboard.” He noted at his press conference that 40 people were shot last week, 7 alone on Monday.

In an unrelated case, police in the 101st Precinct were forced to engage a gunman shooting at another man on Beach 20th Street and Beach Channel Drive at about the same time of day. Nobody was shot in that incident, in which officers found themselves in the middle of what was believed to be gang-related violence. The police car door was hit with a slug and a gun found nearby.

PBA President Pat Lynch said ‘it’s the wrong time to cut the police budget.’ (Photo by Todd Maisel)

Anyone with information on 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 CrimeStoppers website at WWW.NYPDCRIMESTOPPERS.COM, on Twitter @NYPDTips. All calls are strictly confidential.

Police stand guard of crime scene, bullet fragments on the ground in front of 153 Marcus Garvey. (Photo by Todd Maisel)

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