Brooklyn subway shooting: Manhunt underway for suspect who opened fire on train

The shooter, who fled the scene, was described as a 5ft 5in black man with a heavy build wearing a green construction vest and gray hoodie.

Investigators have cellphone video from an eyewitness that shows the suspect, a law enforcement source told CNN. Investigators are also looking for a U-Haul van believed to be linked to the incident, according to internal NYPD emails.

The FBI is working with the NYPD on the investigation and is following “all viable leads,” said Michael J. Driscoll, deputy director in charge of the FBI’s New York field office.

The mass shooting took place just before 8:30 a.m. as a Manhattan-bound N train approached the 36th Street subway station in Brooklyn’s Sunset Park, a working-class neighborhood far from the city’s tourist hubs. Witnesses on the subway said smoke filled the train as it moved between stations, causing havoc on board, and streaks of blood were visible on the floor.

The suspect shot people on the train and on the station platform, NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell said. First responders arrived at the station and found gunshot victims and others injured in the chaos.

Ten people were shot, including five in critical but stable condition, FDNY First Deputy Commissioner Laura Kavanagh said. Six other people were injured due to smoke inhalation, shrapnel and panic in the attack, she added. None of the injuries would be life-threatening, Sewell said.

A firearm was recovered from the station, two law enforcement sources told CNN. It is not clear if this was the weapon used in the attack.

Investigators recovered several high-capacity magazines from the scene, three law enforcement officials said. Two officials said they believe the gun got stuck during the shooting. Investigators also recovered fireworks and gunpowder from the scene, two law enforcement sources told CNN.

Sewell said there were no known active explosive devices on the trains. The attack is not being investigated as an act of terrorism, but authorities have not ruled anything out, she said.

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The mass shooting comes amid a spike in shootings in New York City over the past two years and a particular rise in subway violence that has become a priority for Mayor Eric Adams’ administration.
Crime in transit, overall, is up 68% from a year ago, numbers closer to pre-pandemic levels. A total of 617 crimes have been reported this year, compared to 367 in the same period last year, according to a summary of NYPD statistics through Sunday.

Witnesses say train engulfed smoke

Yav Montano told CNN he was on the express train heading to work when smoke filled the subway car and he heard what sounded like fireworks. The train was between stations at the time, so panicked passengers tried to move to another carriage to get away from the smoke, he said.

“The whole car was engulfed in smoke,” he said. “I couldn’t even use my mask anymore because it was smoke black. It was ridiculous.”

About 40 to 50 people were on the train at the time, he said. He was unsure of the number of injured, but said he saw a lot of blood on the floor of the train. When the train arrived at the 36th Street station, passengers rushed from the train onto the platform.

Brooklyn resident Will Wylde was on the subway Tuesday morning when he heard a noise in the car next to him. People started knocking on the door between subway cars – which are often locked – to try to get through, he said.

Video taken by Wylde shows people rushing out of the subway after he arrived at the station. Smoke billows from the car where the shooting took place and people are heard screaming, the video shows. An individual is seen helping an injured and bleeding person dressed in a blue hoodie off the train. Another man hobbles off the train shortly after, the video shows.

Police told the public to avoid the area of ​​36th Street and 4th Avenue in Brooklyn, where a large presence of emergency responders has gathered.

The Sunset Park neighborhood of Brooklyn is located in the southwestern part of the borough and has a significant number of Asian and Hispanic residents. Each group represents about a third of its more than 135,000 residents, according to U.S. Census data.

The southern part of the neighborhood has become Brooklyn’s Chinatown due to its growing population of immigrants from China’s Fujian Province.

Shootings increase in New York

The shooting comes as violence in New York and across the United States has increased since the Covid-19 pandemic, reversing a decades-long decline.

In New York, more than 360 people have been shot this year in 322 shootings, increases of about 8% and 9% from last year, respectively, according to data reported by the NYPD through Sunday. . Over the past two years, shootings in New York City have increased by 72.2% and victims by 70.4%.

New York City announces plan to increase safety and tackle homelessness on the subway
Tuesday’s subway attack is the second mass shooting, defined as at least four people shot, in Brooklyn this year and the fourth in New York state, according to Gun Violence Archive. The first mass shooting of the year in Brooklyn took place on January 13 at a Brooklyn event hall.

Mayor Adams pointed out that the entire nation is witnessing a high level of violence, not just in New York.

“We are dealing with a problem that is affecting our entire nation right now and that is why this is a national response,” Adams told CNN’s Dana Bash. “We need a national response to this problem.”

Including Tuesday’s shooting, there have been 131 mass shootings in America this year, according to Gun Violence Archive, a nonprofit that tracks gun deaths and injuries. These shots left 141 dead and 547 injured.

Transit systems across the United States increased patrols and asked the public to report anything unusual in the aftermath of the attack.

CNN’s Caroll Alvarado, Nicole Chavez, Jason Hanna, Paul P. Murphy, Peter Nickeas, Yon Pomrenze, Shimon Prokupecz and Elizabeth Wolfe contributed to this report.

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