All nine bystanders wounded in Friday’s shooting near the Empire State Building were hit by bullets fired by police officers, not the gunman they were subduing, the New York Police Department said Saturday.
None of the victims suffered life-threatening injuries; most were graze wounds or were otherwise minor, the Associated Press reported.
According to CNN, the two officers reacting to the gunman fired a total of 16 shots: one officer shot nine and the other shot seven.
Police Commissioner Ray Kelly told CNN most of the bystanders were not hit directly by police bullets, but that the officers hit “flowerpots and other objects around, so … their bullets fragmented and, in essence, that’s what caused the wounds.”
Kelly said six of the wounded were treated and released from hospitals by Friday evening while the three others had remained hospitalized.
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg had suggested Friday some of the wounded bystanders may have been accidentally shot by police officers.
Police said gunman Jeffrey Johnson shot and killed a former colleague at the Manhattan offices of the women’s fashion accessories company where Johnson was once employed. He was confronted by the two officers on a busy sidewalk shortly thereafter. Surveillance footage showed Johnson pointed his gun at them and that the officers reacted quickly, firing their weapons at close range.
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