The NYPD was still without a suspect in the June 27th shooting in Times Square that took place in broad daylight, injuring one U.S. Marine, but things took a chilling turn Wednesday when a sixteen-year-old turned himself in to police.
The teenager has five prior arrests and has been identified as Avon Darden, according to the New York Post.
Darden surrendered himself to the Midtown South precinct where he was held for questioning. It is unclear whether or not he had representation.
The young man allegedly got into an altercation the evening before the shooting with a breakdance performer in Times Square after he walked in front of the artist.
(Video: CBS New York)
Darden returned to the Crossroads of the World on the 27th, where the breakdancer had been the night before, with vengeance. Tensions rose when he confronted the dancer, which ultimately led to the minor pulling out a firearm and shooting at the performer.
The bullets reportedly ricocheted, missing their intended target and, instead, striking 21-year-old U.S. Marine, Samuel Poulin, in the back while he walked in front of the Marriott Hotel on West 45th Street and Broadway with his family. The Poulins were in town for a baptism.
**WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT**
Sadly, this was not the first shooting to take place in Times Square this year. In May, two women and a four-year-old girl were shot just blocks from where Poulin was struck. The police eventually arrested the alleged 31-year-old gunman, Farrakhan Muhammad, in connection with the crime weeks after he fled to Florida.
These instances are part of an alarming upward trend in crime that is a consequence of the radical left’s movement to defund the police. Shootings in NYC are up by almost 38 percent this year alone.
In response to the uptick in shootings in crowded Times Square, New York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio announced the Times Square Safety Action Plan.
“It is just an unacceptable state of affairs. This is a place that is precious and so important to New York City. It has to be safe, so we are adding additional officers… The bottom line is we are going to flood the zone in Times Square with additional officers to make sure this situation is resolved once and for all,” de Blasio said.
The plan will deploy 50 additional officers to Times Square in an effort to combat violent crime.
“After this shooting and the shooting we had a couple weeks ago, it’s very important that we put a lot more of a police presence over there,” NYPD Chief of Department Rodney Harrison added following the mayor’s announcement.
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Poulin was taken to NYC Health + Hospitals/Bellevue where he was reported to be in stable condition.
“The Citadel family – in Charleston, South Carolina and around the world – is greatly saddened to learn about what happened to our Class of 2021 graduate, 2nd Lieutenant Samuel Poulin in Times Square on Sunday when he was hit by a bullet from a shooting event unrelated to him,” said Citadel President Gen. Glenn M. Walters, the military school Poulin attended.
“We are encouraged that he is reported to be in stable condition are sending our prayers and our love to his new wife and his family. 2nd Lieutenant Poulin holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Physics, was a President’s List cadet and exemplifies the kind of principled leader The Citadel strives to produce,” he added.
Darden has five prior sealed arrests, the New York Post reported. Police are charging the teen as a juvenile with attempted murder, assault, reckless endangerment and weapons possession and attempted assault, attempted murder and reckless endangerment for firing a shot at the breakdancer who was his intended target.
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