Rhode Island woman recovering after being shot in New York City’s Times Square
NEW YORK (AP) — Three innocent bystanders including a 4-year-old girl who was toy shopping were shot in New York City’s busy Times Square on Saturday afternoon when someone opened fire during a dispute between several men, Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said. All the victims were expected to recover.
23-year-old Wendy Magrinat was visiting the City with her family when the incident happened. Magrinat told ABC6 she saw a heated argument between men, and said their language alerted her to move her child before the shots rang out.
Right as she moved her two-year-old, Magrinat was shot in the thigh.
The shooting happened shortly before 5 p.m. near the intersection of West 44th Street and Seventh Avenue, police said. The suspects were still at large.
Shea said during an evening news conference that police have one person of interest they’re seeking to question. The police department posted video of the man walking away from the scene on its Twitter page.
“We have … from numerous witnesses that a dispute occurred on the street involving at least two to four people,” Shea said. “It is during this dispute that at least one person pulls out a gun.”
The 4-year-old girl, from Brooklyn, was expected to undergo surgery for a gunshot wound to her leg, Shea said. A 23-year-old Magrinat who was sightseeing was shot in the leg, and a 43-year-old woman from New Jersey was shot in the foot, he said. None of them is related to the others.
Magrinat told ABC6 News the NYPD acted fast, coming to her aid in minutes.
Surveillance videos posted on social media by the fire department show people running away from the scene after the shooting. What appear to be three gun shots are heard on audio from the videos.
Shea said an officer heard four to five shots and officers found three shell casings, appearing to be .25-caliber, at the scene.
Mayor Bill de Blasio called the shooting “senseless violence” and vowed the suspects will be brought to justice.
“The flood of illegal guns into our city must stop,” he said in a Twitter post.
Shea said city police officers have been seizing guns at an alarming rate over the past two years and he said “bad policies” were to blame. He declined to elaborate.
“How many more kids do we need to be shot before we realize that bad policies have consequences and we need action and we need policies regarding laws that have consequences,” Shea said.
City police officials previously have blamed bail reforms that went into effect last year for putting offenders back on the streets, but there’s little evidence people freed from jail are behind the new crimes.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.