It's only the third day of the New Year and three New York City police officers were shot by gunmen in two separate incidents, just minutes apart.
The first incident occurred just after 7:30 p.m. near the Fort Hamilton Parkway subway station in Brooklyn, after police spotted a man moving between cars on the N train.
The plainclothes officers approached the suspect, removing their shields from under their bulletproof vests to explain to the man that they were officers and moving between trains was not allowed. After police asked the man to follow them off the train, he pulled a gun out and shot Officer Lukasz Kozicki, 32, in the thigh and in the groin and Officer Michael Levay, 27, once in the back.
Officer Levay then returned fire with seven bullets, which resulted in the suspect's death, according to Paul J. Browne, the chief police spokesman. The gunman has not been indentified as of yet, but it was revealed that he had been arrested five times prior, once for assault with a knife.
Both officers are in stable condition.
The other incident, which happened just one hour prior, involved four men, one with a gun, that were attempting to rob a car dealership.
The dealership was owned by the family of Officer Juan Pichardo, who was off duty at the time of the crime. He and another employee were held at gunpoint while the men searched and ransacked the dealership, police said.
Officer Pichardo rushed at his assailant and was shot in the lower leg, the police said, but despite the wound, he and the employee subdued the gunman. The gunman and three accomplices, two waiting in a car outside, were later arrested, the authorities said.
Pichardo is also in stable condition.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg spoke at a press conference on Thursday night, commenting on the violent first days of 2013 in New York:
“In recent weeks we’ve heard that what stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun,” Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg said on Thursday night at the news conference, held at Lutheran Medical Center. “But sometimes the good guys get shot.” Mr. Bloomberg renewed his call for stronger gun restrictions.
The first week of the New Year and looks like we've learned nothing from all of last year's misery. Something has to be done.
SOURCE: NY Times