Thursday morning, a police sergeant (wearing plain clothes) had a showdown with a street vendor on 42nd street, ending with the death of the vendor.
The incident, taking place on New York’s most famous and crowded street, caused quite a commotion and was incredibly public as hundreds of people passed by the scene.
This happened at around 11:15 a.m., when the sergeant, Christopher Newsom, 41, had a confrontation with two men outside of 1515 Broadway, the skyscraper that is between 44th and 45th Streets that is most famous for being the setting of the MTV show, “Total Request Live.”
According to the New York Time, sergeant Newsom regularly was assigned to the Midtown South Precinct peddler unit, but switched for the day to help out the anticrime unit that patrols Times Square.
Newsom supposedly recognized two men who were selling CDs to passersby and asked for their vendors’ tax stamp, which they would need to legally sell the CDs in the street.
When asked, one of the vendors, 25-year-old Raymond Martinez of the Bronx, took off running. Sergeant Newsom chased the vendor until they would up at a promenade that leads to the main entrance of the Marriott Marquis Hotel.
Police and detectives were able to see what happened next thanks to the security cameras outside the Marquis.
Apparently, the sergeant yelled at the vendor to stop and put up his hands, but Martinez had a different idea in mind. He pulled out what police found to be a stolen gun out of his coat. Martinez proceeded to shoot twice at the sergeant, who has been on the force for 17 years, until his gun jammed.
In that time, sergeant Newsom had managed to find his weapon, and fired four shots, all of which hit Martinez in the chest, below the neck, and in the left arm. He also had a graze wound in his right arm.
Emergency workers took Martinez to St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital Center, where he was pronounced dead.