Four were wounded in a shooting at London Planetree playground in New York

NYPD and FDNY units in a hospital – Photo: Andrés Correa Guatarasma / Courtesy

Four people, two of them teenagers, were shot yesterday in a Queens park when they were caught in the crossfire of rival groups shooting at each other.

According to NYPD, several people were at London Planetree Playground at the intersection of 88th St. and Atlantic Ave, Ozone Park neighborhood, when the two groups entered the park around 6:20 p.m. yesterday. As bullets flew across the green space, attendees ran, including young children and parents.

None of the four wounded were targeted by the gunmen but were hit by stray bullets, according to sources. A 15-year-old girl was wounded in the leg, and a 16-year-old boy in the back. The others shot were two men, 20 and 32 years old, hit in the legs. All were hospitalized in stable condition.

“We were trying to calm the kids down because they saw people being shot in front of them…here in the park where they play.”

Sam Esposito, President of the Ozone Park Residents Block Association

Police were checking hospitals for other possible victims of the hail of bullets. “It was chaotic,” summed up Sam Esposito, president of the Ozone Park Residents Block Association. “Kids were crying. Parents were crying…We were trying to calm the kids down because they saw people being shot in front of them…here in the park where they play.”

He added that the “Latin Kings” gang used to gather in that park, but in recent years a new group has taken over, plaguing the area with crime.

One of the groups of gunmen got into a black Mercedes-Benz with no front license plate and sped westbound on nearby 95th Av.

No arrests have been made. Anyone with information should call 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) and Spanish at 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). Also, via crimestoppers.nypdonline.org or by text message to 274637 (CRIMES), followed by TIP577. All communications are strictly confidential.

In NYC, gun violence continues to be rampant in 2022, especially among young gunmen and victims. Just Sunday, 12 people were injured in 9 reported shootings around the city.

It is a major challenge to former NYPD Mayor Eric Adams, who, since taking office in January, has encountered obstacles within his own Democratic Party and Black Lives Matter (BLM) leaders in addressing the crisis.

In August, Governor Kathy Hochul and Mayor Adams celebrated an 11% drop in shootings compared to 2021, citing a 104% increase in illegal gun seizures.