A man opened fire outside the Empire State Building in New York City around 9 a.m. on Friday morning, killing a former coworker and wounding eight others before he was shot by a policeman.
Jeffrey Johnson, 53, followed his target — a former coworker — down 33rd Street toward Fifth Avenue before shooting him dead with a .45 pistol.
A construction worker who saw the shooting from scaffolding on the Empire State Building said that the gunman shot his first victim, a 41-year-old male, in the head and once more when he was on the ground.
Johnson then walked toward 34th Street and began shooting at passersby in front of the Empire State Building, injuring two women and six men, NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly said during a press conference.
The construction worker helped NYPD identify Johnson, who was killed at the scene after he aimed his pistol at police officers.
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg said during the press conference that some of the injured victims may have been grazed by bullets from police officers as they attempted to take out the shooter. The victims’ injuries are not considered life threatening, and there were no children or elderly people wounded.
“New York City, as you know, is the safest big city in the country,” Bloomberg said. “But we are not immune to the national problem of gun violence.”