NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — An NYPD sergeant shot in both legs in Queens on Wednesday night has been released from the hospital.

The sounds of applause and bagpipes greeted 44-year-old Sgt. Craig Bier as he was wheeled out of Jamaica Hospital on Friday.

Bier was smiling and grateful for the support, telling the crowd of friends and fellow officers that he “felt great,” 1010 WINS’ Juliet Papa reported.

1010 WINS’ Juliet Papa reports

“It’s a great day that he’s being released, more importantly, it’s a great day that he’s still alive,” Ed Mullins, of the Sergeants Benevolent Association, said.

Bier was working with an anti-gang unit when he was shot in the legs around 10:30 p.m. Wednesday on 107th Street in Jamaica, police said.

Bier had a bullet surgically removed from his leg following the gun battle. Another bullet went in and out of his other leg.

Police are searching for the suspected assailant, identified by police as 24-year-old John Thomas.

The reward for information leading to an arrest and conviction in the shooting has been increased to $32,000.

WCBS 880’s Jim Smith reports

“There is money on his head right now and I’m sure that in today’s climate you could use that money,” Mullins said.

johnthomas NYPD Sergeant Shot In The Legs Released From The Hospital

An image of John Thomas is held by Police Commissioner Ray Kelly on Aug. 9, 2012. (credit: CBS 2)

Bier is the 10th New York City police officer to be shot this year.

“Crime is going up and we’re becoming a marked target on a regular basis,” Mullins said.

Anyone with any information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477). All calls are kept confidential.

Watch & Listen LIVE