Boerum Hill drive-by gunman makes clean escape in front of cops: Locals

drive-by shooter
Valerie Bell (right) and fellow Wyckoff Houses resident Chyna Holloway outside Warren Street Houses, where a drive-by gunman opened fire Friday night.
Photo by Kevin Duggan

Multiple eye witnesses claim that a drive-by shooter fired gunshots outside at a NYCHA complex in Boerum Hill on Aug. 14 — but nearby police failed to pursue the criminals as they sped off. 

“The car pulled up, the black window dropped down, and they start flaming,” said Steve Spain, who witnessed commotion near Third Avenue and Warren Street. “The two police are sitting there at the Jehovah’s Witnesses [church] and didn’t do anything.”

The crooks tossed fireworks out of the car while the shooter let off multiple gunshot rounds from the passenger side of the vehicle toward a group of bystanders outside the Warren Street Houses at around 9:45 pm — luckily not hitting anyone, according to another witness.

“We heard the shots and when we came out, my son called me and said the police are standing here and just watched,” said Valerie Bell, the president of the Wyckoff Houses Tenants Association. “Thank God no one was hurt.” 

Once the crowds began to disperse to escape the gunfire, two officers who had been stationed in the parking lot across the street began chasing after the people fleeing — not the drive-by shooter’s car, which had sped off unchallenged, according to another eyewitness. 

“The car drove off right in front of them,” said Shawnee, a Wyckoff Houses resident who didn’t give her last name. “When I tell you they didn’t do anything, they didn’t do anything. They didn’t do anything until people started running away.”

Officers allegedly ran into the pedestrian crowds with their guns drawn, mistakenly believing that the gunman was among them — before the frightened locals explained the mishap, according to Bell. 

“The point is, if you’re sitting in the parking lot and you see this, you don’t do nothing, you don’t follow the car, there’s a problem,” she said. 

The Friday night incident marked the second drive-by shooting in the area within three days, after a gunman opened fire from a white sedan in the early hours of Aug. 11, injuring a 50-year-old just a block away on Baltic Street near Third Avenue.

Gun violence has soared in the city this summer, including this weekend in Brooklyn, where 51 people were shot, and six were killed by gunfire.

Police did not respond to a request for comment on Friday’s Boerum Hill drive-by shooting.