Earlene Belgon was supposed to be at the vigil, which she said was for a man named “Louie,” who died two or three days ago. Belgon, who knew the victims, said the point of the vigil was to “respect and be here for him and his family.”
“And they came out and started shooting,” Belgon said. “I’m upset. Upset.”
Police, who said the shooting was “targeted” and “gang-related,” taped off the street and were collecting evidence later Monday morning. They did not say who was targeted or what gangs were involved.
A poster from the vigil, surrounded by candles, photos and flowers, was still taped to the wall of the building outside which the shooting occurred.
The mass shooting, Brooklyn’s second in nine days, happened just miles away from a Brownsville shooting on July 27 at an Old Timers Day party that killed one and injured 11 others.
The Crown Heights shooting was listed on the Gun Violence Archive’s website Monday morning as the country’s most recent mass shooting — a term that the data collection defines as a shooting where four or more are injured, excluding the shooter.
No one has been arrested in the Crown Heights or the Brownsville shootings.
“A candlelight vigil in Crown Heights ended in shots fired last night,” Mayor Bill de Blasio tweeted. “The NYPD is searching for the person who committed this cowardly act. If you have any information, please contact them IMMEDIATELY.”
De Blasio did not call the shooting in Brownsville last weekend a mass shooting for four days, originally saying that “phrase is usually reserved for a different type of situation.”
The Crown Heights incident came at the tail-end of a weekend of back-to-back mass shootings in the country, with at least 20 dead in El Paso, Texas, and another nine killed just hours later in Dayton, Ohio.
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