Anti-violence march held after 12 shot at playground in Brownsville

BROWNSVILLE, Brooklyn (WABC) -- A march was held in Brooklyn Monday night following the weekend shooting at a playground that left one person dead and 11 others injured.

The gunfire broke out late Saturday night toward the end of an annual community celebration in Brownsville, the Old Timers Event.

Police continue to search for at least two gunmen believed to have been involved.

Community leaders and residents convened at the site of the festival for an anti-violence march.

A crowd, some in T-shirts honoring the Old Timers Day tradition, marched through nearby streets in a procession that stretched for multiple blocks.

"Brownsville in, violence out!" some chanted.

"I'm livid. I'm livid of the killing," said Marie Delus, the aunt of a shooting victim.

"We can't keep doing the same thing and expect different results," said Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams.

Adams has seen much of Brooklyn turn around in the past two decades, but he describes stubborn crevices of crime that persist, where he says police are only part of the answer.

"We need to go into these communities and help people turn it around," said Adams. "Help people come out of gangs. Get folks jobs."

Several victims of the shooting late Saturday had gang histories, including the man who was killed, NYPD Chief of Detectives Dermot Shea said. But "whether or not that played any role" has not been determined, Shea said.

NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill said police are looking at the possibility of gang involvement, in part because gang violence accounts for about half the shootings in that area of the city.

Six men and five women between ages 21 and 55 were hospitalized with gunshot wounds. One person who was listed in critical condition is now in serious condition, Shea said.

Asked at a news conference Monday how many suspects were being sought, Shea said police "will look for as many as were involved," adding that authorities have received several tips from community members.

The man killed was identified as 38-year-old Jason Pagan and the investigation into the shooting has focused on his criminal history.

Authorities say he had been arrested 26 times and recently spent time in state prison for attempted criminal possession of a weapon.

He is considered one of the shooting's intended targets, although it is not known if he was involved in the gunfire.

A .9mm handgun was recovered in a woman's purse at the shooting scene, but no gun was recovered near Pagan's body.

Ballistics tests indicate a .40 caliber handgun was also fired. It has not been recovered

So far police do not have a suspect and there have been no arrests. It is not yet clear what led to the gunfire.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

* More Brooklyn news
* Send us a news tip
* Download the abc7NY app for breaking news alerts
* Follow us on YouTube
Copyright © 2022 WABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.