Chief Investigative Reporter Jonathan Dienst on crime, corruption and terrorism.

Bloomberg Backs NYPD Conduct in Midtown Shooting

"Let me ask you this," Bloomberg said to a reporter. "If somebody pointed a gun at you, and you had a gun in your pocket, what would you do?"

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Mayor Bloomberg got snappy when a reporter asked him about the NYPD officers' conduct when they fired 16 shots when Jeffrey Johnson pointed his gun at them.

    Police acted properly in a confrontation with a gunman that left nine bystanders wounded outside the Empire State Building, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Tuesday.

    "Let me ask you this," Bloomberg said after an unrelated news conference in the Bronx. "If somebody pointed a gun at you, and you had a gun in your pocket, what would you do?"

    Wake Held For Empire State Building Shooting Victim

    [NY] Wake Held For Empire State Building Shooting Victim
    The 41-year-old man police say was shot and killed outside the Empire State Building by a former co-worker is being remembered by family and friends. News 4's Gus Rosendale reports.

    "They acted more than appropriately," he added.

    The gunman, Jeffrey Johnson, 58, shot former co-worker Steven Ercolino in the head near the landmark skyscraper Friday morning, on a street bustling with workers and tourists. As Johnson calmly started to walk away, a bystander alerted two officers. When they caught up to Johnson, he spun around and pointed his gun at them, surveillance video shows 

    Empire State Building Shooting Victim Mourned

    [NY] Empire State Building Shooting Victim Mourned
    Co-workers mourn Steven Ercolino as a Mass is scheduled for Wednesday at Our Lady of Sorrows Church in White Plains. Meanwhile, many of the businesses near the Empire State Building have reopened for the first time since Friday's broad daylight shooting. Tracie Strahan reports.

    The officers, both veterans who had never fired their weapons on patrol before, shot a total of 16 rounds. Investigators determined Johnson didn't fire at the officers. The nine onlookers were hit by stray bullets, ricochets and fragments, suffering non-life-threatening gunshot and graze wounds. 

    "It's sad that anybody else was injured, but that's what happens, unfortunately, when you fire and there's stone around — bullets hit, fragment, ricochet," Bloomberg said.

    Shooting Victims Continue To Recover

    [NY] Shooting Victims Continue To Recover
    Most the nine victims wounded Friday in a police-involved shooting have been released from the hospital. However, three still remain. News 4's Gus Rosendale has the latest on their conditions from Bellevue Hospital in Kips Bay.

    The shooting will undergo standard reviews by a grand jury and a police panel. Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly has said officials believe the officers followed proper protocol.

    "It was the appropriate action to take," Kelly said Monday.

    NYPD: Empire State Bystanders Hit by Police

    [NY] NYPD: Empire State Bystanders Hit by Police
    Police say the nine people who were hit or grazed by bullets during Friday's shooting were wounded by friendly fire. Jonathan Vigliotti reports.

    Police guidelines tell officers to avoid unnecessarily endangering innocent people. But police are allowed to use deadly force when faced with an imminent threat of serious injury or death.

    Ercolino, 41, was a sales executive at a women's clothing company that let Johnson go a year ago. Johnson, a clothing designer, blamed his layoff on Ercolino, with whom he had traded accusations of harassment, police said. 

    New Details Revealed in Empire State Shooting

    [NY] New Details Revealed in Empire State Shooting
    New details have been unveiled in a police-involved shooting in outside the Empire State Building. Police bullets are to blame for the nine people shot or grazed in the shooting. We also have learned the brutal details behind just how the shooter's victim died. NBC 4 New York's Gus Rosendale has more from the Empire State Building.

    Ercolino's funeral is scheduled for Wednesday at a church in suburban Westchester.

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