NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – An employee of a bodega in Brooklyn who was shot dead early Thursday was apparently targeted, sources told CBS 2’s Kathryn Brown.
The incident took place at 427 Central Ave. near Madison Avenue in Bushwick at around 6:45 a.m.
The victim, 52-year-old Swadh Maged from Staten Island, was shot four times in the chest and arm. He was rushed to Kings County Hospital, where he died a short time later.
The suspect fled in a white Econoline van, 1010 WINS’ Carol D’Auria reported.
“We’ve got a very good description, and as we always do, we’ll look very quickly to see what video in and around the area might be available to us,” police Commissioner Bill Bratton said Thursday afternoon.
Police have obtained surveillance video that purportedly shows the suspect calmly walking into the deli and, without saying anything to anyone, pulling out a gun and shooting Maged, D’Auria reported.
The gunman took nothing except the victim’s life.
“It’s hard; it’s hard to take that,” one man told Brown. “You see him every day in the store, the same person. Nothing changed. He’s the same person. He’s at the store all the time. That’s his store. … Itt’s sad someone’s going to do that to him.”
It’s not clear why Maged may have been targeted.
Irbrahim Alnamer, the victim’s cousin, told CBS 2’s Kathryn Brown that Maged was married and had 13 children who live in Yemen.
“He work hard for his family. This is what I can say about him,” Alnamer said. “He have no problem with anybody.”
Others who knew the victim were upset as well.
“The guy was a nice guy,” said Drew Smith, a friend of Maged’s. ” … He was a very good guy, and he was the type, if you were short money or whatever, he wouldn’t charge you.”
“It’s heart-wrenching, very painstaking for anyone’s life to be taken away,” said Karen Farmer, who lives in the area and heard the gunshots.
Meanwhile, the Bodega Association issued a statement expressing outrage over the shooting.
“We are asking the NYPD a simple question: What is the alternative to stop and frisk? The gun violence in certain Brooklyn neighborhoods is simply out of control. We want a solution to all this gun violence,” said Fernando Mateo, spokesman for the Bodega Association. “Something must be done, innocent people are losing their lives and we are accepting it as being normal thing. It must stop; we cannot stand by and watch while people in our own community are gunning down hardworking men, children and women. We feel for the victim and his family and pray for his soul.”
Community activists are calling for more city-funded surveillance cameras in criminal hot zones.
“It is truly a sad day when hardworking people are killed senselessly,” Tony Herbert of the National Action Network said. “My heart goes out to the victim’s family.”
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