BUSHWICK — A neighborhood teenager was shot multiple times and killed by police officers four blocks from his home shortly after he allegedly robbed a convenience store for beer with a fake gun, according to police.
At 12:40 a.m. Sunday three police officers responded to a call for help at the Garden Deli at 185 Starr Street where the caller said there was an armed robbery taking place, according to Chief of Patrol Terence A. Monahan.
Eighteen-year-old Sergio Reyes had robbed three six-packs of Corona and a six-pack of Heineken and pointed what looked like a real gun at the store clerk, according to police and a surveillance camera photo they released.
Police showed up and soon tracked down Reyes, who was walking west on Starr Street, officials said.
They confronted him in front of 169 Starr St. across from Maria Hernandez Park, where he raised what officers thought was a real gun towards them, police said.
Police opened fire on Reyes, shooting him multiple times, though they wouldn't immediately say how many times he'd been shot, adding that the investigation was ongoing.
Reyes, a Bushwick resident who lived around four blocks from where he was shot and killed, was taken to Woodhull Hospital and later pronounced dead, police said.
Police later released a photo of the gun they recovered at the scene and surveillance camera footage of Reyes allegedly robbing the bodega.
Maria Hernandez Park was closed down most of the day Sunday and Starr Street was blocked off to through traffic.
The fake gun police say Reyes used. (Photo credit: NYPD)
Reyes was a senior at a nearby high school and enjoyed playing handball, said his 17-year-old brother Kevin Reyes.
Their family is from Mexico originally, though they'd lived in Bushwick for over a decade, said their building's superintendent, who'd known the family for that time.
"Excellent people," said super Carlos Blandford, 73, shaking his head.
"Some of the best," he added in Spanish.
Blandford said he was troubled that such a kind family has lost a son.
"A lot of people lose their life like that," Blandford said. "They play with [toy guns]. The police got to defend [their] life too whether it's [a toy] or real."