Police: Disgruntled Former Employee Kills Coworker and Shoots into Crowd in NY

By: Staff Email
By: Staff Email

NEW YORK (AP) - Witnesses describe a chaotic scene on a busy New York City street this morning, as police shot and killed a man who had shot a former co-worker to death.

The gunfire rang out on the Fifth Avenue side of the Empire State Building at around 9 a.m., when pedestrians packed sidewalks and merchants were opening their shops.

One man said he heard "one shot after the other" for about 15 seconds, and people yelling at others to "get down!" Afterward, he said, he saw the sidewalks littered with the wounded.

Police say the gunman, identified as Jeffrey Johnson, was wearing a business suit and carrying a briefcase as he fired three times at his former colleague, shooting him in the head. They say he then walked away and was followed by a construction worker who alerted two police officers. Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly says surveillance video shows Johnson reaching into a bag, pulling out a pistol and pointing it at officers -- who drew their weapons and started firing, killing him.

Kelly says the 14 rounds fired by police may have hit some of the nine people who were wounded. All are expected to survive.

The gunman had been laid off from his job as a women's accessories designer after six years because of downsizing.

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