New York City will add counterterrorism officers to Times Square following the shooting of bystanders Saturday, including a 4-year-old girl who was toy shopping, Mayor Bill de Blasio said during an online news briefing Monday.
The NYPD is still searching for the gunman who opened fire near the intersection of West 44 Street and Seventh Avenue shortly before 5 p.m. Saturday, authorities said. The department released a surveillance video of a person walking away from the scene who police have described as a person of interest.
All of the victims have been released from the hospital and are expected to make a full recovery, de Blasio said Monday.
Calling the shooting “horrible and unacceptable,” the mayor said an additional presence of Critical Response Command officers will be seen in Times Square.
“This kind of thing should not happen in our city and there’s a lot of ways we can address it,” de Blasio said, calling on Congress to pass legislation preventing the flow of illegal guns from entering the city.
The victims include Wendy Magrinat, 23, of Rhode Island, who told WNBC-TV the bullet ripped through her leg during a Mother’s Day trip to New York City.
Also injured was a 43-year-old woman from New Jersey who was shot in the foot and 4-year-old girl from Brooklyn who underwent surgery for a gunshot wound to her leg, according to NYPD Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said. None of the victims knew each other, police said.
Shea said an officer heard four to five shots and officers found three shell casings, appearing to be .25-caliber, at the scene.
“We have … from numerous witnesses that a dispute occurred on the street involving at least two to four people,” Shea said during a news conference Saturday night. “It is during this dispute that at least one person pulls out a gun.”
Despite the violence, de Blasio said Monday he did not expect the incident to impact city tourism.
“In the end people want to come to the city,” he said. “It’s an overwhelmingly safe city.”