Gunfight on the streets of Brooklyn as police arrest suspect after part-time taxi driver, 62, was killed as he finished his night shift
- Cops were staking out address after spotting suspect’s car outside the building
- Suspect rushed out and opened fire, sparking a gun battle with officers
- 52-year-old male is wanted in connection with murder of cabbie last Thursday
- Unidentified suspect was detained and a gun retrieved from the scene
A suspect wanted in connection with the murder of a cabbie engaged cops in a gunbattle in Brooklyn on Sunday before being arrested.
New Rochelle Police had been staking out an address at Myrtle Avenue and Fleet Walk in Fort Greene after spotting a Dodge car belonging to the 52-year-old male.
The suspect walked out of a building at around 10.30am and started shooting at officers who returned fire, sources told Eyewitness News.
‘All of a sudden you hear “hey, hey,” and guys running from them, officer running up and all of a sudden cops pull up “bam, bam, bam,” guys hiding behind a tree,’ local resident Germain Diaz said.
People scattered as shooting broke out across the street, with one bullet smashing through the glass window of an empty store.
Police officers at the scene in Brooklyn on Sunday after the shooting with the 52-year-old male suspect
People scattered as shooting broke out across the street, with one bullet smashing through the glass window of an empty store
The suspect is wanted in connection with the killing of 62-year-old taxi driver Andres Valenzuela (pictured) who was shot twice in the early hours of Thursday after wrapping up his shift and parking his cab at his usual spot outside a catering hall on Main Street.
‘We all jump to the ground, lady fall in front of me, guy fell came back up, old man tripped, started flying,’ Germain added.
The suspect, who has not been identified, was later detained and a gun retrieved from the scene.
There were no reports of any injuries to either the suspect or the cops.
He is wanted in connection with the killing of 62-year-old taxi driver Andres Valenzuela who was shot twice in the early hours of Thursday after wrapping up his shift and parking his cab at his usual spot outside a catering hall on Main Street.
Valenzuela worked for Express City Taxi for the last decade, sometimes working up to seven days a week.
‘All the drivers are feeling bad, you know. Shocking. It’s a surprise. New Rochelle usually is a quiet city,’ said his colleague Marcos Pazos last week.
Neighbor J.P. Morfin said: ‘He’s a really good guy. I would just, like, see him. He always, we used to work the night shift and he was just a good guy. He always would just say hi to everybody. He was just a good guy in general.’
Police said last week that robbery could have been a possible motive.
Authorities told Eyewitness News that the suspect was also wanted for his alleged role in an attempted murder in Connecticut.
Police officers and detectives at the scene of the shooting in Brooklyn on Sunday
Cop cars which responded to the shooting at Myrtle Avenue and Fleet Walk in Fort Greene
A map showing the New York City boroughs where crime has increased (in red) and decreased (in green) in September 2021 compared to the same month last year
It comes amid soaring crime in New York, which like many major cities in the US, has seen a staggering increase in shootings during the pandemic.
New York has seen a major rise in gun violence since the pandemic started, which has continued into this year, with more than 1,200 shootings recorded so far – a rise of about 4 percent on 2020.
Although murders are down by 4.4 percent in 2021, the previous year was a record-breaker, with murders spiking by 47 percent from 319 in 2019 to 468 in 2020.
Felony assaults this year are up by around 6 percent, while rape is up by more than 3 percent.