Good Samaritan helps police take down man carrying rifle in Chelsea

Friday, March 17, 2023
CHELSEA, Manhattan (WABC) -- A man wielding two weapons was arrested in Chelsea Thursday and was charged Friday with federal crimes.

The suspect, Jason Fleming, was spotted wielding a loaded rifle at London Grocery Smoke Shop located at 10th Avenue and West 25th Street at 4:10 p.m. Thursday.

Fleming entered the crowded bodega in Chelsea after having a verbal dispute with a man, according to the criminal complaint.

Worker Zakir Indawala tried to calm the suspect down as he argued with another customer.

"He started crying and then he walked out peacefully and then he had a rifle, I saw him," bodega worker Zakir Indawala said. "I saw the rifle it was a big one."

Fleming then stood in the doorway of the bodega and flashed a handgun as a girl attempted to leave. The child then ran away from the store when she was able to pass Fleming.

Police approached after a witness called 911. Fleming took off running down the sidewalk, brandishing a semi-automatic carbine rifle in broad daylight.

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After throwing the rifle, Fleming brandished the handgun and continued running until a nearby civilian stood in his path and pushed him into a nearby fence.

The good Samaritan held Fleming until police officers, who were still in pursuit, placed him in handcuffs.

The rifle and a .357 were recovered.

Fleming, 39, is charged with firearms possession after a felony and faces up to 15 years in prison.

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