Several Being Questioned in Bronx ER Shooting

Two innocent bystanders shot in what police describe as gang-related shooting.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The emergency room at Bronx-Lebanon Hospital turned into a crime scene, when a gunman opened fire and hit two innocent bystanders. News 4's Ida Siegal reports. (Published Wednesday, Nov 9, 2011)

    Police are questioning several people after a shooting inside a Bronx emergency waiting room that left a nurse and a security guard wounded.     

    Police say the shooting Wednesday night at the Bronx Lebanon Hospital was gang-related and the intended target a patient in the emergency room.     

    Two men -- a 49-year-old security guard and a 37-year-old nurse -- were treated for non-life threatening injuries. They were listed in stable condition.     

    The victims were innocent bystanders in a violent scuffle that broke out in the emergency room at about 7:30 p.m., officials said.

    Witness Cecilia Belle-Singleton was inside the emergency room getting treated for a hand injury when she saw a man in need of stitches talking about a fight he'd gotten into earlier in the day.

    She told NBC New York the man spotted his attackers in the emergency room and called his own family for backup.

    "Some lady told me they started fighting over there by the bathroom," said Belle-Singleton. "Next thing you know, you hear four shots: 'pop pop pop pop.'"

    "You had everybody running with their kids," Belle-Singleton said. "Adults with baby strollers running back there where the doctor's office is."

    The victims were not badly injured: the 37-year-old nurse was grazed in the shoulder, and a 42-year-old security guard was grazed in the groin. They were both being treated.

    The gunman and the groups involved in the fight were not shot, and they ran off before police could catch them, but there were several people in handcuffs at the scene.

    "This is a place you come to get cured," said Artavia Walston, a friend of a patient at the hospital. "You don't come here and expect to get shot."

    "It disgusts me. It is actually the worst that I could ever thought of bringing my child to the hospital," said Nicole Nixon, the mother of another patient. "I normally don't come to this hospital, but this has really set in my mind that I will not be coming back to Bronx Lebanon Hospital."

    When asked how the gun got into the emergency room, hospital spokesman Errol Schneer said, "The gun did not get in the ER, it was in the waiting area. Our understanding is it was a concealed weapon, and luckily, we have an excellent security system in place that was able to address the problem very quickly."