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Breaking News: 2 Hurt in Gunfire at New York's City Hall

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  • Breaking News: 2 Hurt in Gunfire at New York's City Hall

    From Yahoo! News:
    By TIMOTHY WILLIAMS, Associated Press Writer

    NEW YORK - A gunman opened fire during a hearing inside City Council chambers Wednesday afternoon, leaving two victims sprawled side by side on a second-floor balcony. Police were searching for the shooter.

    One council member was shot twice in the chest, according to a police officer at the scene. Mayor Michael Bloomberg was in his office but was not harmed, said his spokesman, Edward Skyler.


    "This is an attack on democracy. We will not stop until we find who did this. It is not terrorism. It appears to be a random act, but we cannot allow this to go on, ever. This is an attack on all Americans," Bloomberg said.


    At least a dozen shots echoed across the second floor of the landmark lower Manhattan building, sending people diving for cover beneath their desks as the hall's rotunda filled with screams.


    "It was so loud you couldn't hear the direction," said City Council photographer Dan Luhmann. "At first, it was absolute stillness. And then people rushed out and ducked under their desks and it was chaotic."


    The shooter was one of about 100 people on the balcony inside the second-floor council chambers when the gunfire began after 2 p.m, according to eyewitnesses.


    "It was panic, It was bedlam it was chaos. People had stunned, shocked looks on their faces and didn't know where to go," Councilman Charles Barron told CNN.


    "I looked up, and I saw someone shooting downward," said City Council member David Yassky. A security guard returned fire, according to Yassky.


    Two victims were rushed from the front of the building on stretchers, loaded into ambulances and brought to New York University Downtown Hospital with gunshot wounds, said hospital spokeswoman Vanessa Warner.


    An emergency worker said the two victims were lying side by side in the balcony, both with bullet wounds to the chest.


    Police sought a man in a blue suit in connection with the shooting, which continued for about three minutes.


    Police officers, including some in riot gear, were seen running across the plaza in front of the building once the shooting stopped. The entrances and exits to the building were sealed off.


    Security, particularly since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, was stepped up at City Hall. Metal detectors were installed at either end of the barricades, along with metal barricades. A uniformed police officer is posted at the gate.


    Employees, reporters with current press passes and police officers are not required to pass through a metal detector. It was not immediately clear how the gunman got a weapon inside.
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  • #2
    I have met James Davis before and have seen him speak at City Council hearings. He is a former police officer and a crusader against gang violence. Heís a very smart and charismatic man who is very passionate about the causes he believes in. And, unlike the other city council members who are just pathetic and useless hacks, he actually did something for his community and spoke with action rather than words.

    From what Iíve heard, the gunman was in the same party (possibly an aide) as Davis and was allowed to into City Hall without passing through the metal detector. This is not normal procedure and security at City Hall is very, very tight. Unless you have a press pass, are with a councilman or are a cop, you are not allowed to enter the building. When I worked for the City, I had to go through stringent procedures myself.

    Kinda freaky, especially since I know exactly where this took place and have been there so many times to attend hearings.

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    • #3
      Sounds like a political rival shot and killed Davis, then he was shot and killed by a police officer. A terrible tragedy.
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