A manhunt is underway after at least 10 people were shot in the New York City subway during the morning rush hour on Tuesday.
The bloody incident occurred at a subway station in Brooklyn, where a man reportedly wearing a gas mask and construction vest was seen throwing a gas canister onto the train and then opening fire, law enforcement officials said.
Early reports said ‘several undetonated devices’ had been found, but officials later clarified that there were no known explosive devices on the subway.
Four of the victims were found at the 36th Street subway station in Sunset Park while a fifth was found at the 25th Street station in Greenwood Heights. At least 16 people were injured in total, 10 by gunfire, fire officials said.
Five people were left in critical, but stable condition, officials said during a press briefing.
No deaths have been reported. The 16 victims were taken to area hospitals to be treated for gunshot wounds and smoke inhalation.
A pregnant woman was reportedly among those hospitalized.
While responding to reports of smoke at the 36th Street station in Sunset Park, officials found several people shot in the station, a New York City Fire Department spokesperson said. The shooting broke out just before 8.30am.
The suspected gunman reportedly stepped onto the subway train wearing a gas mask, opened the gas canister and tossed the device, flooding the train with smoke. He then opened fire on the train and subway platform before escaping.
Police say the gun used during the attack may have been jammed, potentially preventing further injuries.
A weapon along with a bag of smoke canisters and fireworks were retrieved from the station.
Graphic photos of the incident shared across social media showed blood-stained subway platform floors and injured people being carried away from the station on stretchers.
Videos capture panicked passengers fleeing a smoke-filled subway car.
The NYPD’s bomb squad investigated the scene. Officials are searching for as many as four packages they’ve deemed suspicious.
The suspect, who apparently dressed similar to a Metropolitan Transportation Authority worker, was described as a black male with a heavy build, standing 5-foot-5 inches tall and 175 to 180 pounds.
He was reportedly wearing a green construction vest and a gray hooded sweatshirt, Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell said during a press briefing.
Police units searched in the city’s empty subway tunnels for the suspected gunman, whom they believe may have jumped into the tracks and fled the scene.
No arrests have been made. Police do not believe it was an act of terrorism, but say it was likely a premeditated attack.
Around 10am, police said there were no active explosive devices in the area of the shooting.
Power on the N and R trains was off as police searched for the suspect. Trains running on the D, N and R lines were delayed because of an unspecified investigation, MTA officials had said.
New York City Mayor Eric Adams was being briefed on the situation, his press secretary stated on Twitter. Adams recently tested positive for the coronavirus.
New York Governor Kathy Hochul tweeted that she had been briefed on the ‘developing situation’ in Brooklyn, and that her office will work with the MTA and NYPD as the investigation continues.
Schools in the area are also sheltering in place as police search for the gunman.
President Joe Biden has also been briefed on the shooting, and White House senior staff are in contact with Mayor Adams to provide assistance as needed, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said in a tweet.
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