According to the NYPD, three separate shooting incidents that took place near schools on the Upper West Side, Harlem, and East Harlem areas of Manhattan on Tuesday, March 14th appear to be linked.
The first shooting, which was reported in LittleAfrica News, occurred around 10 a.m outside the Martin Luther King Jr. High School Campus. The shooting resulted in the injury of a 17-year-old boy and the arrest of the 19-year-old shooter. Three hours later, around 1 p.m, another shooting occurred outside Harlem Renaissance High School at East 129th Street and Madison Avenue when five teenagers heading for lunch got into a brawl with three assailants. Shots were fired as a result of the brawl, striking a 16-year-old boy in the leg and a 27-year-old bystander in the leg as well. According to the police, the 16-year-old boy was the target of the shooting. “It seemed like it was planned,” a witness said. “They were waiting for him.”
The three men who got into a brawl with the five teenagers and fired at them, ran off after the incident and have not been arrested at the time of writing.
“I hear, like, five shots, and I see the person, he got shot, in the corner — then I see his friends, they try to help him, I try to call 911,” said a man who was in the area when the shooting occurred.
Because of the manner in which the attacks occurred, police officials believe the two shootings, as well as a third one that occurred around 3 p.m at East 105th Street and Park Avenue, are connected. “The last five hours we got three shooting incidents in the northern side of Manhattan,” NYPD Chief of Patrol John Chell said at a media briefing.
“Right now, we’re proceeding like they’re all connected,” he added. “Why do I say that? In proximity, geography, around schools, age of our victims, and now we confirmed at least one incident, this incident here is gang-motivated.”
Because of the frequency of shootings and that they are most likely gang-related, the NYPD activated a level 2 mobilization that would end at dismissal on Wednesday, March 15th. “Right now, in the city of New York, we have a level two mobilization. We are calling in multiple resources from all the boroughs, transit, housing, our school safety division, and we’re deploying to areas the best we know to slow this down,” Chell said. “This surge of level two immobilization will continue tonight and we’ll go into the school arrival and dismissal tomorrow.”