An attack involving a BB gun might not ordinarily draw a response from top NYPD brass, but meeting with community leaders in Crown Heights this week Chief of Department Rodney Harrison hoped to show that police are taking it seriously.
"It's still in the preliminary part of the investigation," advised Harrison. "We have a great team in place. Mike Kemper, who's the borough commander here, he's put a task force of investigators in place to help investigate the incident."
It happened late Monday night. Police said a 23-year-old man dressed in traditional Jewish clothing was standing at the corner of Albany Avenue and Montgomery Street, when a suspect in a moving car used a BB gun to shoot him in the forehead. The victim wasn't seriously injured, but advocates like Devorah Halberstam said it's left many people fearful.
"Knowing that they're searching for the perpetrator of this crime is extremely important to the family and to the community as a whole," said Halberstam.
While investigators have not yet called the incident a hate crime, Halberstam said it’s important that police respond seriously, especially as an example to younger members of the community.
"Sometimes we need to give kids direction, and I think that the direction that being offered to them is not necessarily good," said Halberstam.
With few leads, Harrison said hate crimes task force has been notified.
"We're looking for a dark colored sedan, we don't know who were the occupants of that vehicle at this time. But like I stated before, we're going to need the community's help," said Harrison.
Anyone with information is asked to call NYPD Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS.