Friday, August 24, 2012

Developing: Multiple Casualties From Shooting Outside Empire State Building

Shortly after 9:00 AM local time, multiple reports came in indicating that there was a shooting in the vicinity of the Empire State Building. It appears that there are at least six injuries, and at least one person killed besides the shooter. The NYPD and FDNY are on the scene, which has been secured.

The reports indicate that the shooter may have been recently fired from a business that operates in the building.

Police apparently shot the gunman, but not before the gunman killed at least one person. Several others have been taken to area hospitals. The area around the Empire State Building has been closed to traffic as the investigation continues.

At least four of those injured were shot. There were about 10 injured.

The victims were apparently targeted by the gunman. In one instance, a witness claims to have seen the gunman walk up to one of the victims and shot them point blank in the head.

More details emerging, including several potential motives:
The investigation into the matter was in its earliest stages, and the official said he was unsure of the details and circumstances that led to the shooting.

Two law enforcement officials said investigators have concluded that the shooting had no connection to terrorism and that it appeared to stem from a domestic dispute of some kind. A third said it may have been sparked by a robbery or dispute in the street.

One woman said that she had just come out of a dentist’s office near the Empire State Building when the shooting happened.

“Suddenly I heard two shots or three shots, boom boom boom, and I saw two guys, they go to the floor,” said the woman, who would only give her first name, Monica. “I was really afraid.”

Andrew Pellenberg, 23, and a friend, both from New Jersey, were thinking about visiting the Empire State Building. “We heard 10 to 15 gunshots, and it was all in a 30-second span,” Mr. Pellenberg said.

Several of the victims were treated at the corner of Fifth Avenue and West 34th Street. The wounded were taken to Bellevue Hospital and St. Luke’s Roosevelt, with the more seriously injured going to Bellevue, the official said.

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