Two killed near Empire State Building

August 24, 2012 11:30AM

Ten people have been shot and two are confirmed dead just outside the Empire State Building, in a shooting thought to be related to a workplace dispute, Reuters and others reported. The New York City Police department told the New York Post that the shooter was killed in the ensuing gun battle with the police, and that some of those injured may have been hit by NYPD gunfire.

At a news conference today, Mayor Michael Bloomberg indicated that the shooter was a 53-year-old man, and the victim a 41-year-old man. The mayor also said that six men and two women were wounded in the incident, which occurred outside the iconic 34th Street building, on Fifth Avenue, according to Reuters.

The man who was killed was a former coworker of the alleged shooter, Mayor Bloomberg said; police identified the alleged shooter as a Jeffery Johnson.

Queens state senator Malcolm Smith, who was in the area at the time of the shooting and had spoken with Mayor Bloomberg, said the man who was killed by the shooter had been shot in the face, according to the New York Times.

Johnson was a laid-off former worker at Hazan Imports, which sells women’s apparel, the Washington Post said. Johnson shot his as-yet unidentified co-worker at Hazan, located at 10 West 33rd Street, the New York Times said, before walking around the corner and proceeding up Fifth Avenue.

The Empire State Building, which is owned by partnerships led by Peter Malkin and his son Anthony Malkin, plans to issue an initial public offering. Investors in the 102-story tower have brought lawsuits contending that the IPO favors certain investors over others. [Reuters] [NYT] [Post] [Washington Post] — Guelda Voien

TRD thanks David Zar of Zar Property NY for photos from the scene.