29-year-old innocent bystander shot and killed by stray bullet at Bronx deli

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Tuesday, April 2, 2024
Stray bullet leaves 29-year-old innocent dead at Bronx deli
CeFaan Kim has the latest from the Bronx on the deli shooting.

THE BRONX, New York (WABC) -- Employees say a 29-year-old man who died after being shot in the thigh in a Bronx deli was an innocent bystander buying chips.

Stefon Barnes, 29, was identified Monday as the victim in the shooting that happened at the Gourmet Deli located at 851 East Tremont Ave. around 4 a.m. on Sunday.

The Bronx deli was full of customers packed inside, dancing and singing, moments before the violence erupted.

Workers at the deli say Barnes, who was a frequent customer, was buying a bag of chips when he was hit by a stray bullet while a scuffle happened inside.

Video of the incident shows what looks like a man in a ski mask trying to go through the pockets of a man wearing a black and white jacket.

It's unclear who, but one of them has a gun. As they struggle, a friend of the man in the black and white jacket enters the store.

As he joins the scuffle, a gunshot goes off.

Video shows a man, later identified as Barnes, by the bag of chips then grab his upper thigh and then exit the deli as the scuffle continues.

Barnes walks out into the street holding his leg as that fight spills out onto the sidewalk.

The man in the black and white jacket then rips the gun out of other man's hands and walks away from the scene.

As for Barnes, the innocent bystander, police say he was shot in the right thigh and lost a lot of blood.

He was taken to St. Barnabas Hospital in critical condition where he was later pronounced dead.

A friend of the victim said Barnes had a warm personality and a good sense of humor.

"I can't really describe him. You would've had to know him, to hang around him, get to interact with him," said the woman who did not want to be named. "Like I can't really explain. You would have to know him to know who he was."

Residents who live in the neighborhood say they are shocked.

"This is a good neighborhood, and nobody has problems with anybody. And to see this happen it's shocking," said resident Kairi Bailey.

"It's not the first time this has happened. I just don't want it to continue to happen," said a resident named Tristan.

No arrests have been made and the investigation is ongoing.

Detectives were initially investigating if Barnes was the victim of a mugging.

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