A Troubling Spike In Shootings Across The City

Protestors holding the American and Blue Lives Matter flags. (Photo via Rathkopf Photography, with permission.)

BROOKLYN – Over the weekend, there were 28 shooting incidents across the city, the NYPD told us. The number at the same time last year? Five.

“With a troubling spike in shootings throughout the five boroughs,” Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams said, “the victims of which have overwhelmingly been people of color, I cannot say it enough: Black lives matter, whether the perpetrator wears a blue uniform or blue jeans.” 

“Black and Brown brothers and sisters are not just the targets of senseless police brutality, they are also the targets of senseless street violence,” he continued. “We must move forward on reform, but not move backward on safety. For there is no true safety without justice and there is no true justice without safety. We must have more safety and more justice both on Park Avenue in Manhattan and on Park Place in Brooklyn. We can do this with responsive and responsible policing that takes perpetrators of shootings and murders off our streets. We can do it with precision policing and community involvement.”

As of July 12, there had been 634 shootings in 2020, compared with 394 in 2019, NYPD data shows. This comes after extensive protests across the city against police brutality and calls for NYPD to reform. A few weeks ago, the city’s budget passed with $1 billion reallocated from the NYPD’s budget. 

When asked if it had anything to do with it, Adams told Pix11, “I think it was a combination. I believe in some areas it was effective and in some areas it was abusive. That’s why I ask the police commissioner… Let’s build it the right way. Let’s make sure we have seasoned officers with communicative skills to communicate well, officers who wear some part of a police attire, like a jersey so they can be identified. And also have officers with experience on the job.”

Here is what went down:

On Friday, July 10 at around 7:15 p.m., a 28-year-old man was shot in the arm on Bergen Street near New York Avenue in Crown Heights. According to the NYPD, he was shot by three unknown men, though no description was given. He was taken to Kings County Hospital and is in stable condition.

Then, at around 7:45 p.m., an 18-year-old man was shot in the torso in front of a hotel on New Jersey Avenue near Fulton Street in Cypress Hills. When cops arrived at the scene, he was unconscious and unresponsive. He was taken to Brookdale Hospital Medical Center and was soon pronounced dead.

At around 9:50 p.m., a 21-year-old man was shot twice in the right leg on East 78th Street near Glenwood Road in Canarsie. He was taken to Brookdale Hospital Medical Center and is in stable condition.

On Saturday, July 11 at around 2:15 a.m., cops found a man with a graze wound to his right arm on Kings Highway near West 8th Street in Bensonhurst. 

On Sunday, July 12, at around 11:30 p.m., a man opened fire on a group of people who were doing a barbeque outside the Raymond Bush Playground on Madison Street and Marcus Garvey Boulevard. According to the NYPD, one-year-old Davell Gardner was sitting in a stroller when he was shot in the stomach, along with three others – a 25-year-old man was shot in the ankle, a 36-year-old man in the leg, and a 27-year-old man in the groin. All of them were taken to Maimonides Hospital. The little boy died while the men are in stable condition. 

Also on Sunday, a 12-year-old boy was shot in the leg on Prospect Place near Ralph Avenue in Crown Heights. He was taken to the hospital and is expected to survive. 

And then on Monday, a string of shootings took place just minutes from each other in Canarsie. In fact, Brooklyn was met with ten shooting incidents on the first day of the work week. A cop told the NY Post that, “Those numbers would be high for a Friday or Saturday, but for a Monday they are astronomical.”

It began early morning when a man was shot multiple times in the head and torso on Williams Avenue near Stanley Avenue inside his building. He was taken to Kings County Hospital and was pronounced dead. 

On Monday, July 13, at around 6 p.m., a 23-year-old woman was shot four times in the chest on Remsen Avenue near Avenue M in Canarsie. At around 6:30 p.m., a 19-year-old man was shot in the elbow, another 19-year-old man was shot in the leg, and a third 19-year-old man was shot in the back on Rockaway Parkway near Seaview Avenue. Just two minutes later at around 6:32 pm., an 18-year-old man was driving his scooter with a woman at Flatlands Fourth Street and East 108th Street when he was shot in the back. All of them were taken to Brookdale Hospital Medical Center. 

According to the NYPD Chief of Detectives Rodney Harrison, “All of these are drive-by shootings. We believe that all of our victims were the intended target.”

He noted that all of the victims are expected to survive and that, “The concern that we have with all three of these shooting incidents is there was a white four-door Sedan involved in each one.”

Adams believes there needs to be proactive solutions in regards to addressing gun violence, and he intends on working with people to make that happen. 

“If the government divests from wasteful police spending and invests in proactive solutions outside of law enforcement, we can start turning things around in underserved communities,” Adams said. “We must demand a city that treats what’s happening in our communities of color as a crisis not as everyday incidents. I won’t surrender to violence. And I won’t accept daily injustice.”

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Zainab Iqbal

Zainab is a staff reporter at Bklyner who sometimes writes poetry in her free time || zainab@bklyner.com

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