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Holland Tunnel Shooting Cause Remains A Mystery

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(credit: CBS 2)

(credit: CBS 2)

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JERSEY CITY, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – The investigation continues to what sparked police officers to open fire inside the Holland Tunnel during rush hour on Friday, causing the major transit passage to be closed for six hours.

Just after 6 p.m., Port Authority police officers tried to stop a jeep as it approached the tunnel heading into New York City. The jeep didn’t stop so the two officers opened fire on the jeep.

LISTEN: 1010 WINS’ Glenn Schuck reports on the shooting

LISTEN: WCBS 880’s Sean Adams reports on the arrests

“It still remains unclear exactly what precipitated that encounter,” Port Authority spokesman Steve Coleman said. “During the events, there were four shots that were fired.”

Police said the two suspects, Jahed Saunders and Lorenzo Diest, face multiple charges, including aggravated assault, weapons possession and carjacking.

One eyewitness told CBS 2 that the driver of the jeep tried to use the vehicle as a weapon.

“The police officer got dragged about 15 feet then he broke out the window and opened fire. Two shots hit him twice,” Kevin Dempsey said.

Police said the man who was shot ran through the tunnel trying to get into other people’s cars.

“A chase ensued into the tunnel, then he got in the passenger side in the back,” Port Authority Police Superintendent Mike Fedorko said.

Police said both men from the jeep were taken into custody. One suspect was shot in the arm, a non-life threatening injury, and taken to Bellevue Hospital. The police officers also suffered from wounds.

“The Port Authority police officers were taken to Jersey City Medical Center for injuries they suffered. They’re currently in good condition,” Coleman said.

No charges have been filed yet.

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