Brooklyn DA says no charges yet in NYC ‘self-defence’ subway shooting

The shooter in a Brooklyn subway confrontation — that quickly escalated from a verbal exchange to a violent altercation — will not be facing charges at this point given “evidence of self-defense”.

On Thursday, 14 March, a 32-year-old man boarded a jam-packed A train in Brooklyn at 4.45pm when a 36-year-old man approached him “aggressively,” police said. The older man displayed a sharp object before reaching for his gun, which the younger man grabbed and shot him with four times.

Police said on Thursday that they weren’t sure whether charges would be brought against the 32-year-old — who was arrested on the scene — or whether it would be characterised as self-defence.

But a spokesperson for the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office told The Independent in a statement on Friday: “Yesterday’s shooting inside a crowded subway car was shocking and deeply upsetting. The investigation into this tragic incident is ongoing but, at this stage, evidence of self-defense precludes us from filing any criminal charges against the shooter.”

Neither of the men have been publicly identified.

The 36-year-old man was taken to a local hospital in critical condition after being struck with one shot to the neck, one to the chest and two in the right side of the face, ABC7 reported.

A small calibre firearm was recovered from the scene, police said.

New videos emerged since the shooting transpired on Thursday afternoon, revealing that a woman was allegedly also involved. The woman, who police believed to be travelling with the 32-year-old man, appeared to cut the 36-year-old man with a sharp object that she had pulled from her purse, police said.

At one point, the 36-year-old is heard asking, “Did you stab me?” before appearing to pull a gun from his jacket and saying, “You stabbed me?”

She has also not yet been identified, and it’s unclear whether any charges could be brought against her.

Firearm recovered from the scene

(New York Police Department)

Police have said they do not believe the two men knew each other before the confrontation on the subway.

Videos circulating on social media captured terrified passengers on the crowded train, huddled together and ducked down on the opposite side of the car.

The footage also captures officers at Hoyt Schermerhorn station running to the scene as the train pulled into the station. Police said officers could hear the gunshots as the train approached.

Janno Lieber, the chair of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, said at the press conference that it is “absolutely outrageous” that someone would bring a gun onto the subway and start a fight.

“The victim here, the police said, appears to be the aggressor. But the real victims are the people I saw in those videos who were having a harrowing time because they’re on a train with somebody with a gun,” Mr Lieber said.

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