THE BRONX — A former hospital employee armed with an assault rifle and wearing a medical jacket fatally shot a doctor and wounded several others before killing himself Friday at Bronx-Lebanon Hospital, police said.
The shooter — identified by sources as Henry Bello — opened fire on the 16th and 17th floors of the complex at 1650 Grand Concourse Friday afternoon, police said.
Dr. Tracy Sin-Yee Tam, 32, of Jamaica, Queens, was found dead on the 17th floor and six others were wounded on the 16th floor, the NYPD said. Five of them suffered serious injuries, while the sixth sustained a gunshot wound to the leg.
The shooter also tried to set himself on fire before turning the gun on himself, police said. He started fires at the nurses stations on the 16th and 17th floors using gasoline and matches that were extinguished by sprinklers, according to an official source.
A Henry Bello name was listed as an employed family medicine physician on the hospital's website as of Friday evening.
"The shooter killed himself, but not before having done horrible damage," Mayor Bill de Blasio said at the press conference, noting the incident was isolated and not an act of terrorism. "This was a horrific situation unfolding it the middle of a place people associate with care and comfort."
Workers in the hospital at the time of the shooting described a chaotic scene, with patients crying and embracing while police flooded the premises after a "code silver" rang through the building — an announcement indicating someone had a weapon.
"The patients, they were all nervous," said housekeeping worker Lloyd Boyd, 59, who has been at Bronx-Lebanon for nine years. "In a situation like this, a lot of people were crying, holding hands, hugging."
Boyd then watched gunshot victims being wheeled into the emergency room, he said.
"I know they brought in anywhere from four to six. They had them on gurneys covered," he said.
A doctor on his first day as a physician at the hospital said he was on the 15th floor when he heard the gunshots, sparking panic among his colleagues.
"The situation was very scary and we all panicked," said Dr. Pranav Sharma. "We all locked ourselves in the doctors duty room.
"Initially I did not think they were gunshots. But I knew when a lady was rushing to our room and said there was a shooting — then I knew. She was running for her life."
— Reporting by Aidan Gardiner, Trevor Kapp, Patrick Hedlund, Allegra Hobbs and Katie Honan