A person has been shot lifeless by police after opening hearth from the steps of New York Metropolis’s Cathedral Church of St John the Divine simply after an out of doors choir efficiency.
New York police division spokesman, Sergeant Edward Riley, stated the gunman had fired on police, however no officers or bystanders have been believed to have been injured within the late-afternoon violence on Manhattan’s higher west facet.
The suspect, who was not recognized, was rushed to a neighborhood hospital in crucial situation, the sergeant stated. New York police commissioner, Dermot Shea, later stated the gunman had died.
“It’s by the grace of God in the present day,” Shea stated, that nobody apart from the gunman was struck.
The person had a prolonged prison historical past and was carrying a backpack containing a can of gasoline, rope, wire, tape, knives and a well-worn Bible, Shea stated. The police commissioner referred to as the actions of the officers “heroic”.
The taking pictures outdoors the Episcopal Church (or Anglican) cathedral, situated at Amsterdam Avenue and West 112th Avenue, occurred about quarter-hour after the conclusion of an out of doors choir efficiency on the steps drew an viewers of about 200 individuals.
The choir’s annual Christmas vacation live performance had been moved outdoors in step with Covid-19 well being security guidelines.
“It was simply stunning, after which on the finish this individual began taking pictures. Everyone is in shock,” a cathedral spokeswoman, Lisa Schubert, advised the New York Instances. “The shooter might have killed lots of people. There have been tons of of individuals right here and he shot no less than 20 occasions.”
Solely about 15 individuals have been nonetheless current when the gunman appeared on the high of the steps, screaming, “Kill me”, and “shoot me”, as he fired a handgun, sending bystanders operating for canopy in panic, based on a Reuters photographer who was on the scene.
Cops who had taken cowl ordered the suspect a number of occasions to drop his weapon earlier than taking pictures him, the photographer stated. Members of the choir have been already again contained in the church by the point of the taking pictures, which lasted a number of minutes, she stated.
Reuters images of the gunman confirmed him carrying a black winter coat, a white baseball-style cap and a face masks emblazoned with the flag of the Dominican Republic, as he stood wielding two pistols, one in every hand. He additionally was carrying a big backpack strapped to his shoulders.
Police stated officers recovered two firearms from the scene after the taking pictures.
NY city mayor, Invoice de Blasio, stated on Twitter that “fast motion of our NYPD officers stored the group protected”.