New York: Disgruntled Employee, Jeffrey Johnson, Kills 41-Year-Old Former Co-Worker

It all happened this morning around 9 a.m. a 53-year-old fashion accessories designer, shot and killed his 41-year-old former boss with a .45 caliber handgun on a sidewalk near the Empire State Building in New York.

Police returned fire, killing the shooter and wounding several bystanders, all of whom were expected to survive, Mayor Michael Bloomberg told a news conference.

Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly identified the shooter as Jeffrey Johnson of Manhattan, who had worked at Hazan Imports across the street from the skyscraper. Johnson was disgruntled over being fired a year ago.

The shooting took place outdoors, at the height of the tourist season by one of New York City’s most popular attractions

CBS News New York reported  that Johnson shot his boss in the face, killing him, before opening fire on other in the area, injuring ten.

One person other than the gunman was declared dead at the scene. Another person was taken to a hospital in a condition that was considered life threatening, an official said.

Friday’s shooting comes on the heels of several other public shooting sprees, including one inside a Colorado movie theater last month and another at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin several weeks ago.

Jill Greenwood, an account supervisor at Prosek Partners in the Empire State Building, said she heard several gun shots beginning at 9:04 a.m. Friday. In the minutes afterward, people inside the building began streaming out because an echo from the shots made it sound like they were coming from inside the building.

Later, she was told by building security the shooting took place outside the front of the entrance to the building’s observation deck at 34th Street and 5th Avenue.

“We heard these gunshots, it sounded like fireworks. So, we both got up and went to the window and looked down,” said Ms. Greenwood, a 30-year-old New York resident.

“I got out of a cab right there five minutes before it happened,” she added.

A spokesman for the building’s controlling owner, Malkin Properties, declined to comment.

The man was fired from his job Thursday, the law enforcement source told CBS News. He worked at Shanghai Happen Import and returned there to get money he was owed.

“We are not immune to the national problem of gun violence,” said Bloomberg, a leading national proponent of gun control and founder of the group Mayors Against Illegal Guns.

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