Sunset Park

Sunset Park mass shooting may have been weed deal gone bad: Police source

January 3, 2020 Jaime DeJesus, Ned Berke and Meaghan McGoldrick
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A mass shooting off Sunset Park’s Third Avenue left three men and one woman wounded Thursday evening, and a police source told the Brooklyn Eagle it may have been a drug deal gone awry.

A source from the local 72nd Precinct said cops believe three of the victims — a 42-year-old man shot in the leg, a 37-year-old man shot in the arm, and a 24-year-old man shot in the abdomen and right leg — were innocent bystanders in a shooting that began over a marijuana deal.

The three bystanders were on 62nd Street between Second and Third avenues at around 8:11 p.m. on Jan. 2 when a gunman opened fire.

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That attack was prompted by an earlier shooting at the same location by a different gunman that left a 24-year-old woman shot in the right leg, the source said.

Cops have the second gunman in custody and are still looking for the first shooter, who wounded the woman. The source said cops believe the second shooter was looking for retribution for the shooting of the woman when he opened fire on the group of bystanders, one of whom he thought was the original assailant.

Three victims were taken to NYU Langone Hospital-Brooklyn. The woman is at Maimonides Medical Center. All are in stable condition.

The source added that police are confident they will find the suspects. “We know everyone and have the names,” the source said.

The corner where the shooting took place. Photo: Meaghan McGoldrick/Brooklyn Eagle

The incident is New York City’s first mass shooting in 2020, two days into the new year, and the fourth nationwide, according to the Gun Violence Archive. The project tracks mass shootings across the nation, defining the term as any shooting with four of more victims other than the perpetrator.

Sunset Park’s 72nd Precinct has one of the lowest number of shootings in New York City, with four incidents in 2019 (up to Dec. 29, the most recent date available), and just one in 2018.

Brooklyn overall saw a 6.8 percent decline in shooting incidents in 2019 from the previous year, according to figures touted by Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez on Friday morning.

Though the numbers remain down in Brooklyn South, which includes Sunset Park, police figures show that a small number of precincts — particularly Brownsville’s 75th and Crown Heights’ 77th — have contributed to an increase of shooting victims by 6 percent in Brooklyn North precincts, though the number of shooting incidents has stayed roughly the same. That’s largely due to three mass shootings in those neighborhoods, including the Brownsville shooting that left one dead and 11 injured. Crown Heights saw two mass shootings that, combined, left four dead and seven injured.

This is a breaking news story and will be updated as more information becomes available. 

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