An NYPD officer was wounded after a stray bullet smashed through his cruiser window when a gunfight broke out in Brooklyn Thursday afternoon, police and sources said.
The officer, identified by Mayor Eric Adams as Detective Sunjay Verma, was in a marked vehicle patrolling on Pitkin Avenue near Legion Street in Brownsville when two groups exchanged gunfire just after 4:30 p.m., according to police sources.
A stray bullet hit the cruiser’s driver-side window, leading to an injury to the Verma’s left shoulder, police said.
Police had initially reported that the officer was shot, however sources confirmed to The Post that he received minor injuries from the shattered glass and was not struck or grazed by the bullet.
The 26-year-old cop was taken to Kings County Hospital where he is in stable condition, police said.
At a press conference at the scene, NYPD’s Detective Bureau Assistant Chief Joe Kenny told reporters that a male shooter standing in front of 17 Legion Street opened fire intending to strike a white vehicle that was traveling northbound on Legion Street.
After the police vehicle was hit, Verma and his partner immediately jumped out of the vehicle and pursued the shooter on foot as he fled southbound on Legion Street, Kenny said.
The suspect ducked into a nearby courtyard where the cops lost him, he said. A 9mm handgun was recovered in the area where he fled. Police have established a frozen zone around the area as they search for him, Kenny said.
Police have obtained footage of a white Toyota fleeing the scene, sources said. The car belongs to a man who lives on the block who is allegedly a member of the Stacks gang, according to sources.
Verma is a neighborhood coordination officer [NCO] in the department’s 73rd precinct and has been with the force five years, sources said.
A local resident, who identified himself as Dallas, said he was playing Dominoes with pals nearby when gunshots suddenly rang out.
“We heard shots – about six shots. It was rapid fire,” he told The Post.
After the shots, he said he saw police chasing someone down the block
“It’s our neighborhood. Happens all the time in this neighborhood.”
An older man who was in nearby Zion Triangle at the time of the shooting said he “hit the floor” when he heard the gunshots.
“The cop car was right there,” he said, pointing to the police vehicle with the shattered window. “When they heard the shots, they jumped out of the car and ran down behind the guy.”
The witness said the cop car was stopped at the light when it was hit.
“A female cop and a male cop ran down the block behind him. That’s what happened. The cop car was parked right at the light when it went off.”
“What are you going to do? I’ve been in this neighborhood all my life. It’s nothing new.”
Mother Kim Perez said she wants to move her family out the neighborhood, which she described as “not the best.”
“Summer just started,” Perez said. “It’s not even been a week. We definitely need to move out of this neighborhood.”
Mayor Adams blamed the surging violence on too many guns, citing the Supreme Court bombshell decision Thursday to strike down a New York state law restricting the carrying of concealed firearms, and bail reforms that put criminals back out on the streets.
“More and more we need every arm of the criminal justice system to participate in this fight and we feel as though it’s not,” Adams told reporters. “And today, out of all the other decisions, the Supreme Court hands down the decision that basically states our job is going to get harder.
“Too many guns on our street with too many bad people returning to our streets to do bad things to innocent people”