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No charges in New York subway shooting; Brooklyn DA cites 'evidence of self-defense'

NEW YORK The Brooklyn District Attorney said Friday he will not file any criminal charges at this time against the shooter. Thursday's subway shooting due to self-defense.

The chaotic scene occurred in the middle of the evening and played out in videos posted on social media.

Friday, the NYPD responded to the terror observed on board.

Watch the latest NYPD update

Watch an update on the NYPD investigation into the Brooklyn subway shooting

11:24 a.m.

The press conference that took place in the afternoon clearly showed what the investigation had concluded at that time: the train passengers had to act and disarm an attacker with a firearm, including the The man who police say shot the attacker with this weapon.

Hours later, the prosecutor's office followed suit.

Cellphone video obtained by CBS New York from inside the moving A train shows the terrifying situation as it escalated during rush hour Thursday afternoon. A 36-year-old man is in critical condition after being shot in the head. However, on Friday afternoon, the prosecutor's office said it would not charge the man who pulled the trigger, saying in a statement: “Evidence of self-defense precludes us from filing criminal charges.”

“It's amazing what the people in the community did yesterday, the people who tried to intervene,” said New York Police Department Chief Jeffrey Maddrey.

Maddrey and NYPD officials say the 36-year-old man aggressively approached a 32-year-old man, eventually pulling out a gun which was pushed away. Police said the 32-year-old then shot the alleged attacker in the head with his own gun.

Police said they also wanted to speak to a woman who had a sharp object or knife and stabbed the 36-year-old man during the confrontation. She was apparently traveling with the 32-year-old, CBS New York's Lori Bordonaro reported.

Watch Elijah Westbrook's report

Police search for woman after Brooklyn subway shooting


Police released a video which they say shows the attacker entering the subway through the emergency exit before the incident, without paying a ticket. At Friday's briefing, NYPD officials focused their attention on that point.

“Sometimes people wonder why we would do an operation of this magnitude for people who don't pay a $2.90 fare,” said New York City Police Deputy Commissioner Kaz Daughtry. “We're seeing a small group of people doing these operations who are not paying their ticket, who are repeat offenders, who have arrest warrants.”

The witness who shot the dramatic cellphone video describes the terrifying moments aboard the moving train to CBS New York.

“I see blood coming out when they’re on top of each other,” the woman named Sherri said. “He pulled the gun out and I said, 'It's time to go.'”

Watch the first investigation briefing

NYPD update on Brooklyn subway shooting


Other New Yorkers spoke of the underground violence.

“The National Guard is in the subway and, meanwhile, you know, this is happening,” Molly Devries said.

“I'm a New Yorker. I've lived here my whole life, so I know the metro culture,” Aaron Mealy said. “If there’s an altercation on the subway, you can’t get off until the next stop, so it’s best to defuse the situation.”

“We can't say, 'Oh, it happened on the subway, the subway is dangerous.' No, there is a bigger problem, and if we don't solve these problems, this is going to continue to happen, whether it's on the bus or on the street,” Nysheva Starr said.

CBS New York asked Mayor Eric Adams about the shooting at an event Friday morning.

“These random acts of violence send the wrong message. I'm really glad the police are there to apprehend and make sure other people don't get hurt,” he said.

In recent weeks, the mayor and Governor Kathy Hochul both made a point of emphasizing the importance, not the numbers, of people's sense of security, which partly explains why the National Guard was called. But at Friday's press conference, Deputy Commissioner Daughtry stressed that although many saw what happened on Thursday, millions of people arrived at their destinations safely.

So far this year, there have been eight shooting victims in the public transportation system. This time last year, there was only one. There were also 17 gun arrests, compared to eight last year.

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