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Man Shot on Troubled Greenpoint Corner, Police Say

By Gwynne Hogan | November 1, 2016 3:54pm
 A man was shot on the corner of Manhattan Avenue and Clay Street Tuesday morning 2:47 a.m., police said.
A man was shot on the corner of Manhattan Avenue and Clay Street Tuesday morning 2:47 a.m., police said.
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DNAinfo/Gwynne Hogan

GREENPOINT — A man was shot in the leg Tuesday morning on a troubled neighborhood corner plagued by heroin sales and quality of life complaints that residents associate with a nearby homeless shelter.

The unidentified 29-year-old victim was wounded just before 3 a.m. in front of 1109 Manhattan Avenue and taken to Bellevue Hospital in stable condition, police said. 

The victim who lives on Greenpoint Avenue, according to local police, told them that he heard a bang and felt pain in his leg and soon realized he'd been shot. He asked a bouncer at a nearby bar for help who dialed police, according to head of the 94th Precinct, Captain Peter Rose.

The victim since stopped cooperating and told the bouncer that he didn't want police involved, Rose said.

"It's just not making too much sense," he said. "We don't think he was shot from a distance."

The corner of Clay and Manhattan streets, situated between two shelters, including one run by Home Life Services Inc., has been the focus of concerns among residents who've complained they've seen everything from drug deals and fist fights to domestic violence unfurling on the sidewalk.

"Home Life is not looking out for the community," said Laura Hoffmann, 52, a lifelong Greenpoint resident who lives down the block from the shelter and has regularly attended meetings with the shelter to voice her concerns.

"They made a lot of promises at the meeting. They said they were going to bump up security. If they did it's not working."

Home Life Services Inc. didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

Last week a manager at the second Clay Street shelter, run by the Bowery Residents Committee, said their residents are easily able to buy heroin on the corner of Manhattan and Clay. Neighbors have said that the BRC shelter has generated far fewer community complaints.

Local Councilman Stephen Levin allotted $40,000 to have the NYPD install cameras on the corner. Those went up in September, according to Levin's office, but they've done little to alleviate issues, neighbors said.

In the month of October there were around 30 complaints to 311 about loud noise, partying, smoking, and public drinking near the intersection, according to city records.

"I have a baseball bat at my door. I used to have a baseball bat there in the 1990s. I dug it out a couple of months ago," Hoffmann said. "I can't deal with feeling unsafe on my corner and a lot of other people are feeling unsafe and frightened as well."

As of Oct. 23, 7 people were victims of shootings in the Williamsburg part of the 94th Precinct, which also includes Greenpoint.