STATEN ISLAND — NYPD officers wounded a man who pulled a gun on them after he and a friend armed with an AR-15 practiced their shooting in some woods in Charleston early Thursday, officials said.
The two 24-year-olds, Patrick Allen and Jonathan Derbyshire, were hanging out at a house near Androvette Street and Arthur Kill Road when they decided to go shoot some guns in the nearby woods, according to Chief of Patrol Terry Monahan.
"I heard a few rounds of shots. An hour later, the streets were swarmed," said Jillian Valenzi, who lives nearby.
Officers were responding to a 911 call of shots near there about 1:10 a.m. when they spotted Allen come from the side of a building and point a 9-millimeter Glock 26 at them as Derbyshire bolted into the woods, police said.
Police fired four shots at Allen, hitting him three times in the leg and once in the bulletproof vest he was wearing, Monahan said.
It wasn't immediately clear if Allen fired on the officers, Monahan said.
"At this point, we're not sure if he fired at us or not, but he did point a gun at us," the Chief of Patrol said.
Officers chased Derbyshire into the woods where they discovered an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle, several bullet casings and a large hunting knife, police said.
"We've recovered a total of four firearms: three automatics and one machine gun," Monahan said without providing further details.
Derbyshire was arrested later Thursday morning, officials said.
Allen was treated at Staten Island University Hospital North where he's listed in stable condition, Delatorre said.
Charges against both men are pending, but officials said they did not have licenses for the weapons.
Both men have been arrested before, but the Chief of Patrol did not provide additional details.
Apart from the nearby shooting range, Colonial Rifle and Pistol Club, gun violence is rare in the neighborhood, residents said.
"It's a pretty quiet area," Valenzi said.
The shooting highlights the dangers police face every day, said Patrick Lynch, head of the NYPD's union.
"On any call police officers respond to, they could be confronted by perps armed to the teeth with assault weapons and body armor, as they were today," Lynch said.
"In this climate, we need the support of our elected officials and the public more than ever. NYC police officers need to be treated like professionals, paid like professionals and given the equipment and training we need to counter these increasing threats," the union president added.
Thursday morning's police shooting comes on the heels of two others in Brooklyn.
About 9:30 p.m. Tuesday, 63-year-old James Owens, who police described as mentally ill, lunged at officers with a kitchen knife in his Canarsie home, prompting the officers to fire on him, officials said
Six hours later, officers on patrol spotted Joshua Martino, 18, fire into a Prospect Heights bar, police said. When they approached him and identified themselves, he turned the gun on them so they opened fire, officials said.
Both Owens and Martino were pronounced dead at Brooklyn hospitals, officials said.
When asked whether the three police-involved shootings this week stemmed from a disconnect with the community, NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill told 1010 Wins Thursday morning, "There's no disconnect. Our jobs are dangerous jobs."
Anyone with information should contact Crime Stoppers at (800) 577-TIPS (8477).