NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A suspect is in custody after an argument in a Brooklyn Deli turned violent. Two store clerks were shot, and one of them is now fighting for his life.
The shooting happened around 8:40 a.m. at the Famous Deli & Grocery on Hicks Street near Mill Street in Red Hook.
Police say 42-year-old Harry Austin, of Brooklyn, came in and started arguing with an employee inside the deli. After exiting the bodega, Austin returned brandishing a firearm, according to police.
Surveillance video shows residents fleeing down the sidewalk after police say Austin shot 52-year-old Ramon Lopez and 33-year-old Magid Hugais one time each in the abdomen. Witnesses say the shooter walked out calmly.
“He was walking this way with his hand in his pocket like this,” the witness said, “and when he’s walking the cops approached him and put the guns on him and told him to stop.”
Police said they caught up with him across the street and recovered a loaded 9 mm semi-automatic handgun in his possession.
Hugais’ family worries he may never walk again after he and Lopez were shot during their shift.
“I feel mad, sad, everything,” friend Amro Talkutiano said. “All the feelings.”
The victims’ coworkers say they’re devastated.
“There was no reason for him to do what he did,” one _____ said. “He didn’t talk to him, there was no problem between them. He shouldn’t have done what he did. It was foolish.”
“We were like family here with everyone and this guy, we don’t even know him,” another ____ said.
As charges are pending against Austin, police say both victims are recovering in critical, but stable condition.
Austin has nine prior arrests and is not believed to have known the victims prior to the shooting Tuesday, according to police.