Police have captured and arrested a man identified as 26-year-old Rashaun Robinson after he shot and wounded a police officer Wednesday night near the intersection of Empire Boulevard and Utica Avenue in Crown Heights.
The incident took place just before 5:00pm, when two 71st Pct police officers — James Li, 26, and Randy Chow, 30 — noticed two men attempting to board a B46 bus through the rear doors to avoid paying a fare, according to police.
The two men fled in different directions when the officers approached them. One of the suspects, Robinson, ran west on Empire Boulevard, then turned and fired at the two officers, striking Li.
The officers returned fire. But Li fell inside a White Castle parking lot after he was hit three times and wounded in both legs and his groin.
Witnesses to the incident directed police to a building at 455 Schenectady Ave where Robinson was found hiding, along with a Smith & Wesson .45-caliber handgun.
Robinson was arrested after ballistics tests showed the gun matched up to shell casings at the scene of the shooting, NYPD Chief of Department Philip Banks said at a Wednesday evening news conference.
Robinson had six prior arrests and an active warrant out of Pennsylvania for narcotics, said Banks.
The other fare-beater has not been arrested. Police are still looking for him, but he is believed to have no connection to Robinson, according to a spokesperson at the 71st Pct.
Li was treated at the scene by two off-duty EMS workers and then rushed to Kings County Hospital Center, where he is reported to be alert and in good condition.
“He’ll be in there a few days,” said the spokesperson. “But he wasn’t seriously injured, so we were lucky this time.”