A former employee opened fire inside one of New York City’s busiest hospitals on Friday afternoon, killing one doctor and wounding six other people before taking his own life.
New York Police Department Commissioner James O’Neill said that police received a 9-1-1 call at 2:55 p.m.
“Responding officers located six victims on the 16th floor – five with serious injuries and another who had been shot in the leg – and another victim, a female doctor who had been shot and killed, on the 17th floor.”
“There are several doctors who are fighting for their lives right now.”
“The shooter killed himself, but not before having done horrible damage.”
O’Neill said that the shooter then attempted to set himself on fire on the hospital’s 17th floor.
Police later found the gunman dead with what they believe to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Police sources identified the gunman as a family medicine physician who previously worked at the hospital.
Raymond Thomas, 52, said “All I know is I looked over (out the window) and saw people coming out in a hurry,”
A few minutes later, he said, he saw the police presence and saw people being hurried around by police. “It’s really crazy to see a shooting at a hospital, you know?”
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio praised police and firefighters who responded to the shooting and hospital staff who helped hide and comfort patients.
Even hours after the shooting, some family members of hospital employees and patients remained at the scene, waiting to be reconnected with those still being held inside the hospital.