On Sunday, a man was killed inside a NYC Smoke Shop in Harlem when the perpetrator fired shots at him, hitting him in the head, as depicted in a disturbing video of the incident. The victim, aged 36, was discovered with gunshot wounds in the smoke shop located at 304 Lenox Ave. at approximately 8 p.m., according to law enforcement.
The shooting is the most recent instance of violence linked to the growing tobacco industry in New York City. The victim, whose identity has not been revealed, was hit in the head and back, according to sources.
He was taken to NYC Health and Hospitals/Harlem, where he was pronounced dead. The perpetrator and the victim were engaged in a disagreement just prior to the shooting, according to authorities. The video of the event, which was obtained by The Post, shows the gunman conversing with the victim and a few other men for several seconds before firing at the victim as he was leaving, causing him to be struck in the head.
The footage shows the victim falling to the ground, though he was still exhibiting signs of movement and attempting to stand up when the perpetrator heartlessly fired another shot at his back. The shooter is captured on camera calmly exiting the store after the brutal assault. Police reported that he escaped on foot while wearing dark attire. As of now, no apprehensions have been made.
On Sunday, the Harlem smoke shop was not the sole establishment where employees had to contact law enforcement. According to authorities, a smoke shop in Brooklyn was held up by a masked perpetrator who brandished an unspecified object and made off with cash. The NYPD stated that the robber was dressed entirely in black, with a mask covering their face. Fortunately, no injuries were reported.
During a public safety hearing held by the City Council on March 20, a high-ranking police official reported that the number of robberies occurring at New York City’s marijuana-friendly storefronts has been steadily rising.
Police Chief of Patrol John Chell disclosed that this year’s robbery rate targeting storefronts that sell pot paraphernalia, including unregulated cannabis, has increased by 10% compared to last year. Unfortunately, just a few days before the hearing, a staff member was fatally shot during a failed robbery attempt at a smoke shop in Queens.