UPPER WEST SIDE — A man was arrested after ditching a gun he fired during a fight on West 93rd Street Thursday night, police said.
The incident happened shortly after 9 p.m., when Anthony Steward, 22, and a friend were waking west on West 93rd Sreet toward Riverside Park and got into an argument with two other men headed in the same direction, police said.
A brawl erupted, leading Steward to squeeze off one shot from .25 caliber semiautomatic gun and prompting multiple 911 calls, said Capt. Marlon Larin, commanding officer of the 24th Precinct.
When officers arrived, they found a single shell casing outside of 317 W. 93rd St., as well as a 9-inch stainless steel knife sitting on the ledge of an air conditioner of a ground-floor apartment, Larin said. Officers also found a Nokia cellphone, a pair of eyeglasses, a pair of headphones and two baseball caps on the ground, he added.
Police later recovered the gun from a trash can at the entrance to Riverside Park at 93rd Street, wrapped inside a bloody sweater and T-shirt, Larin said.
During a canvas of Riverside Park by officers from the 20th Precinct, they found Steward walking on a park pathway near 93rd Street without a shirt and bleeding, police said. He was brought to St. Luke's Hospital and released after being treated for flesh wounds from the fight, including a cut on his arm and bruising, Larin said. The wounds were not from the knife found at the scene, he noted.
Steward was brought back to the 24th Precinct and confessed at about 2 a.m. to having the gun, Larin said.
"He believes that they were trying to rob him... [He said] he discharged [the gun] to scare them off," the commanding officer said, noting police were not able to apprehend his friend.
Witnesses reported seeing two other men flee the scene via a taxi headed south on West End Avenue, he added.
Steward, an Upper West Side resident, is being charged with criminal possession of a weapon in the third degree and reckless endangerment. Information regarding his attorney was not available.
Larin credited the swift response of eyewitnesses living on the block with aiding the police in their investigation.