Several people shot outside Empire State Building; Gunman reportedly dead

Shortly after 9 a.m. EDT, the New York City emergency units were dispatched to the scene of a shooting at 34th Street and Fifth Avenue.

At least four victims so far, shooter is DOA. Civil Disturbance zone / Level 1 mobilization around the Empire State Building. 34/6.

— Marc Ambinder (@marcambinder) August 24, 2012

Pic from

— Marc Ambinder (@marcambinder) August 24, 2012

There are conflicting reports on casualties.

BREAKING: FDNY now saying at least 8 people have been injured near Empire State Building #shooting

— toddstarnes (@toddstarnes) August 24, 2012

Good news: appears that most victims were transported in stable condition; one serious. Other EMS units being dismissed from scene.

— Marc Ambinder (@marcambinder) August 24, 2012


— Reuters Top News (@Reuters) August 24, 2012

The Associated Press is reporting that the shooter is dead.

NYC police: 3 or 4 civilians wounded in shooting near Empire State Building; shooter is dead @AP

— Chicago Tribune (@chicagotribune) August 24, 2012

Twitchy will monitor developments and update as more information becomes available.

Updated casualty reports are coming in:

Update: total patient count: 10, including TWO dead on the scene. 8 transported to hospital, most w/ non-life threatening injuries.

— Marc Ambinder (@marcambinder) August 24, 2012

The shooting reportedly took place at two separate locations: one outside the Empire State Building and another in the lobby of a building:

WNBC: Eyewitness reports people were shot in two different locations on two different blocks of Fifth Avenue near Empire State Building.

— Matthew Keys (@MatthewKeysLive) August 24, 2012

WCBS: Some of the victims in the shooting in New York were inside a lobby of a building; some shot outside. Shooting near Empire State Bldg

— Matthew Keys (@MatthewKeysLive) August 24, 2012

Images from the scene:

Helicopters hovering over Empire State Building post shooting

— Ryan J. Reilly (@ryanjreilly) August 24, 2012

Shooting at Empire State Building. Several gunshot victims, including Gray Line worker

— Anthony Ramirez (@hildyjohns) August 24, 2012

Lots of cops. #empirestate shooting

— Azi (@Azi) August 24, 2012

Chaos at Empire State Building

— Scott Austin (@ScottMAustin) August 24, 2012

Reuters is reporting that eight individuals have been shot, including the gunman.

Eight people in total shot outside Empire State Building, one of the dead is shooter – New York police source

— Reuters Top News (@Reuters) August 24, 2012

CBS reports 10 shooting victims, one critical:

WCBS: Figure increases to 10 people shot outside Empire State Building in New York City.

— Matthew Keys (@MatthewKeysLive) August 24, 2012

WCBS: One civilian shot near Empire State Building "extremely critical condition."

— Matthew Keys (@MatthewKeysLive) August 24, 2012

Was there a specific target?

CNN has a reporter on the scene. It sounds like the shooter was targeting a specific person; additional injuries from ricochets.

— J.M. Berger (@intelwire) August 24, 2012

Eyewitness accounts:

Shooting on 34th st. I just saw 2 people fall to the floor. My heart is non existent right now

— Dee (@_dee_xo) August 24, 2012

@sebby_c I saw 2 get shot. And cops start running towards me. I'm still shaking. I work in front of the empire state

— Dee (@_dee_xo) August 24, 2012

Witness at Empire State Building: I saw the shooter. A young white boy. He was dead. #EmpireShooting

— Nels (@debitking) August 24, 2012

Shooting at Empire State bldg. Chaos. Police shot 1 man dead. 4 wounded. I saw 2 men shot lying in street @ 34th. Area cordoned off.

— Margaret Bald (@AuthorMBald) August 24, 2012

Woman at Subway sandwich shop by #EmpireState shooting tells me she saw people "running" "crying".

— Azi (@Azi) August 24, 2012

New York’s ABC affiliate is reporting the shooting as a “workplace dispute”:

Local ABC " Eyewitness News" 7 in New York says it can confirm this was "a workplace dispute that spilled out onto the street"

— Anthony De Rosa (@AntDeRosa) August 24, 2012

The New York Post has the same account:

Shooting in NYC was over petty dispute amongst coworkers #ESB

— Vee (@_BlessedCurse) August 24, 2012

The Post also reports two fatalities, a female victim and the shooter.

The incident is not thought to be linked to terrorism at this time.

Multiple people have reportedly been shot outside the Empire State Building but details are unclear, no apparent link to terrorism – NYPD

— Market Broadcaster (@TsTEddie) August 24, 2012

Interesting that an NYPD source could tell @Reuters "no apparent link to terrorism" within 40 min of shooting outside Empire State Bldg.

— Brian Sasser (@ProducerSass) August 24, 2012

But clearly details are still emerging and some reports are still conflicting.

Workplace dispute. Terrorism. Space lizards. Nobody knows nothing.

— southpaw (@nycsouthpaw) August 24, 2012

ABC News and CNN have entirely different explanations of this incident, both reportedly confirmed by law enforcement sources.

— southpaw (@nycsouthpaw) August 24, 2012

RT @jbarooah: AP reporting 3 dead in Empire State building shooting. Reuters reporting 2 dead.

— Matthew Keys (@MatthewKeysLive) August 24, 2012

CNN is currently sourcing 2 dead to OEM on their chyron. OEM told me personally that they did NOT confirm that number to CNN.

— Jake Beckman (@jakebeckman) August 24, 2012

Mayor Bloomberg will be politicizing, er, speaking at 11 a.m.

Bloomberg podium is here on the scene of shooting. Expect a statement soon.

— Azi (@Azi) August 24, 2012

Briefing at 11. #EmpireState shooting

— Azi (@Azi) August 24, 2012

Not that he would do anything like that:

"just minutes before the mayhem…Bloomberg warning about the dangers of “too many guns on the streets” on radio show"

— Mark Gongloff (@markgongloff) August 24, 2012

ATF agents are on the scene.

ATF agents just arrived at the Empire State bldg shooting site

— Holly Bailey (@hollybdc) August 24, 2012

MSNBC fail:

MSNBC chyron says the "ATM" is on the scene of Empire State Building shooting.

— Ryan J. Reilly (@ryanjreilly) August 24, 2012

The latest report on the victims:

FDNY CONFIRMS: 10 patients – 4 minor injuries, 4 not urgent, 2 dead. Unknown if shooter is included in those figures. Unknown if all shot.

— Jake Beckman (@jakebeckman) August 24, 2012

FDNY said "10 patients, 4 green, 4 yellow, 2 black tags" – Green = minor injuries, Yellow = not urgent. Black is dead.

— Jake Beckman (@jakebeckman) August 24, 2012

The Empire State Building is reportedly on lockdown.

Empire State Building is on lockdown, no one allowed in or out. Employees ordered to stay inside.

— JoAnna Negron (@TherealDove) August 24, 2012

President Obama has been notified.

Pres Obama was notified of the NY shooting shortly after 9:30 am by his Homeland Security Advisor, John Brennan

— Mary Bruce (@marykbruce) August 24, 2012

More on the suspected shooter:

Gunman was fired from job yesterday, returned to scene today to target his boss, local/federal officials say @NBCNewYork #ESBshooting

— NBC News (@NBCNews) August 24, 2012

@azipaybarah NYT says shooter was white guy wearing a suit. definitely not the body i saw. pretty shaken up.

— Tom McKay (@thetomzone) August 24, 2012

ABC says the FBI tells them in "no uncertain terms" that this was not terrorism. Employee was fired yesterday, came back for revenge.

— Jake Beckman (@jakebeckman) August 24, 2012

WNBC sourcing authorities: Shooting suspect worked at business inside Empire State Building.

— Matthew Keys (@MatthewKeysLive) August 24, 2012

Warning: The photos linked from these tweets are graphic. It is not yet clear if this is indeed the shooter.

Empire State Building Gunman Dead. GRAPHIC

— ボス (@channin_) August 24, 2012

Mayor Bloomberg confirms there were two deaths: the gunman and one victim.

Mayor Bloomberg: Shooter killed one person, at least nine others were shot

— Matthew Keys (@MatthewKeysLive) August 24, 2012

Click here for Twitchy’s live coverage of Mayor Bloomberg’s press conference on the shooting.

The shooter has been identified:

53-year-old Jeffrey Johnson used .45-caliber semi-automatic pistol in this morning's ESB shooting. Victim is 41-y/o.

— Harrison Golden (@harrisongolden) August 24, 2012

53-year-old Jeffrey Johnson fired one year ago from Hazin Imports. He used .45-caliber semi-auto pistol in this morning's ESB shooting.

— Harrison Golden (@harrisongolden) August 24, 2012

Jeffrey Johnson, 53, attempted to shoot NYPD officer. He misfired. Officer returned fire, killing Johnson with one shot.

— Harrison Golden (@harrisongolden) August 24, 2012

The woman he shot and killed was 41 years old.

NYPD commissioner Ray Kelly: At 9:03am disgruntled former employee shot and killed former co-worker, suspect is Jeffrey Johnson, 53

— Jesse Rodriguez (@JesseRodriguez) August 24, 2012

The shooter has been identified as Jeffrey Johnson, a disgruntled employee. His victim remains unidentified until the family is notifed.

— Whitney (@WhitBBurns) August 24, 2012


Media outlets are now reporting that the 41-year-old victim was a man:

Update: Victim of shooting near Empire State Building is 41-year-old man, declared dead at scene – @WSJ

— Breaking News (@BreakingNews) August 24, 2012

The New York Post is reporting that this man was alleged shooter Jeffrey Johnson’s former boss, Steve Ercolino.

HE HAS A NAME: Steve Ercolino identified as co-worker shot at Empire State Building… — PLEASE RETWEET

— Global Grind (@GlobalGrind) August 24, 2012

Steve Ercolino has been identified as the former co-worker shot and killed by Johnson. Ercolino has been the Vice President of Sales at Hazan Import Corp. since December 2005.


The Wall Street Journal has posted more photos from the scene:

Photos from aftermath of the Empire State Building shooting: #esb

— Wall Street Journal (@WSJ) August 24, 2012



There is speculation that several of those wounded were hit by stray bullets fired by NYPD officers. In his press conference today, Mayor Bloomberg suggested that this was the case.

We must keep guns out of the hands of the #NYPD -14 out of 19 Rounds Fired by New York City Cops Hit Civilians –

— Primer (@Primer_Media) August 24, 2012

Wanna talk gun rights? All 8 of the innocent bystanders shot at Empire State Building this morning were hit by POLICE bullets. #nypd

— Jennie Pawlak (@JenniferPawlak) August 24, 2012

So the empire state gunman didn't actually fire on NYPD and all 9 bystanders were shot by NYPD – makes you proud!

— Jon (@joninsocal) August 24, 2012

It appears that at least one of the people shot today was in fact accidentally hit by a police officer:


— NICK @CNNCNY (@CNNCNY) August 24, 2012

The relevant passages from The New York Times:

Mr. Johnson, the commissioner said, was carrying a .45-caliber semiautomatic handgun “in a bag under his arm.” It had a capacity of eight bullets, officials said, adding that Mr. Johnson had fired three at Mr. Ercolino, who was apparently a vice president at Hazan Imports. Mr. Bloomberg said Mr. Johnson pulled out his gun “and tried to shoot the cops and kill the cops.”

At Bellevue Hospital Center,  Robert Asika, 23, a ticket seller for Gray Line tours. emerged with his right arm in a sling. “The bullet came in and went out,” he said. “I’m very lucky.”

Mr. Asika said he had been shot by a police officer.  Asked how he felt about that, he said, “I guess, you know, stuff happens.”

Eleven people, including Johnson and Ercolino, were shot this morning.

11 people shot, gunman's handgun held eight rounds… NYPD has bad aim –

— Sam Greene (@SGdoesit) August 24, 2012

The math indicates that the majority of those shot were hit by the police. I explain here: #TheCycle

— Tom Reynolds (@Beregond) August 24, 2012

As of now, this theory has not been confirmed.



The New York Daily News is reporting that the nine surviving victims were in fact shot by NYPD officers:

The 9 people wounded by gunfire in NYC were hit by bullets from police officers

— toddstarnes (@toddstarnes) August 25, 2012

“For these police officers, their world changed in an instant,” said NYPD Deputy Commissioner Paul Browne. “It went from busy but uneventful in terms of crime… to a situation within seconds where they were confronted by a man with a gun.”

The NYPD duo fired 16 rounds at Johnson before the killer could squeeze the trigger even once.

Nine people were wounded, all from police gunfire, although none of the wounds were life-threatening, cops said. Most of the injuries were to the legs, feet and arms, cops said.


Twitterers are offering their condolences and sending prayers:

Praying for Everyone involved in the shooting at the Empire State Building.

— Adrienne Bailon (@Adrienne_Bailon) August 24, 2012

My prayers and heart go out to everyone affected by the Empire State Building shooting.

— Nina Kangaloo (@ninakangaloo) August 24, 2012

Just read about the shooting at the Empire State Building. Praying for all the people and their families involved. So tragic and senseless.

— Maren Happy (@Marenloove) August 24, 2012

My condolences and prayers go out to the families & the victims of the shooting at the Empire State Building. Don't forget God is with you.

— britt (@BrittTheGoddess) August 24, 2012

My thoughts and condolences are with the victims and the families of the victims at the Empire State Building shooting. Prayers.

— just kinda happened (@julysbelxo_) August 24, 2012

Wow. Not a good morning. Thoughts and prayers go out to the families and loved ones of those involved in the Empire State Building shooting.

— Kei Hyska (@K_Hysk) August 24, 2012

Empire State Building shooting? :O my prayers go out to the people involved.

— – (@DopestDem) August 24, 2012

Prayers to the victims involved in the shooting at the Empire State Building. Make sure to tell the ones you love most how you feel today!

— Tan Snobs (@tanningsnob) August 24, 2012