A gunman opened fire near the Empire State Building in New York City on Friday morning, killing one people and wounding eight others, before reportedly being shot dead by the police. The gunshot injuries to the eight injured bystanders are reportedly not life-threatening.
The FBI swiftly declared that the incident was not terrorism-related. Instead, it’s being classified as a “workplace dispute,” according to Fox News in New York, which learned that “the gunman had been fired from his job in the last two years,” and had some sort of grievance with one of his victims. At a press conference, New York mayor Michael Bloomberg identified the shooter as Jeffrey Johnson of Manhattan, former employee of a women’s apparel store, and said the attack was directed at the store manager.
Bloomberg credited a construction worker with pointing out the intrepid killer to police officers, and said that some of the wounded might have been caught in the crossfire between Johnson and the cops who brought him down. He appealed for witnesses with information that could help establish the precise sequence of events to contact the authorities. Bloomberg said the perpetrator was armed with a single .45 pistol.
The area of the shooting was crowded with both residents and tourists. A witness told the Chicago Tribune of seeing “a guy laying on the [sidewalk], bleeding from the neck and barely breathing… everybody was crowded around him taking pictures and video, and security guys were yelling at everybody to get back and give him space.”