Five people, including a 6-year-old boy, were shot in an area where people had gathered for an overnight celebration known as J’Ouvert in New York early Monday, police said. CBS New York reports the shooting happened at an intersection in Brooklyn’s Crown Heights neighborhood as people were out in the area for the festivities.
But it’s unclear whether the shooting had any relationship to J’Ouvert, which is meant as a celebration of freedom from slavery.
The boy was shot in the leg, police said. A 47-year-old woman and three men, ranging in age from 34 to 45, also suffered gunshot wounds in their legs and feet. All five were taken to a hospital with injuries not considered to be life threatening.
One neighbor told CBS New York the 47-year-old victim stopped by with her son to check on her older daughter, who was attending the party.
“Only reason she was over here was because her daughter wasn’t answering the phone. After she spoke to her daughter, they were walking right here, and that’s when three shots went off,” the woman said. “I saw the little boy on the floor full of blood, and I ran.”
Two men were arrested and two guns were recovered, New York City Police Chief Terence Monahan tweeted. He also called the shooting “senseless” and asked anyone with information to contact police.
J’Ouvert and the West Indian American Day Parade later Monday were scheduled to be virtual this year due to the coronavirus pandemic, but it appeared some people still gathered in person.
CBS New York reports the NYPD set up light towers and increased its presence – both in uniform and undercover – to make sure large crowds don’t congregate.
Over the weekend, preliminary numbers show there were 14 shootings with 14 victims, including three fatalities.
The city saw a 166% increase in shooting incidents in August – 242 compared to 91 in August 2019. In addition, murders were up 47% for the month, with 53 this year versus 36 in August 2019.