NYPD Officer Fired Gun Inside Columbia’s Hamilton Hall, Manhattan DA Confirms

An officer entering Columbia University’s Hamilton Hall Tuesday evening to break up a pro-Palestinian demonstration fired his gun inside the hall, in an incident that is now under review by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office a spokesperson confirmed Thursday evening in response to an inquiry from THE CITY.

The gun fired did not appear to be aimed at anyone and no one was injured, said Doug Cohen, a spokesperson for Bragg’s office, who said the office’s Police Accountability Unit is reviewing the shooting, which it does as a matter of policy.

Cohen said no students and only police officers were in the immediate vicinity when the shooting occurred.

Rumors of the shooting had quickly spread among students, but had not been confirmed until Thursday. A video posted to X by student Columbia Students for Justice in Palestine Tuesday night showed a police officer texting, “thought we fucking shot someone.”

The gun discharge is the latest revelation about the highly-militarized NYPD action to break up a Pro-Palestinian student demonstration at the campus that been going on since April 17.

In multiple television and radio appearances, as well as a press conference Wednesday morning, Mayor Eric Adams praised the NYPD’s “precision policing” and made no mention of the shooting.

During the raid, police blocked press access to that raid almost entirely, though they released a highly-edited, flashy video of dozens of officers storming the campus, breaking through barricaded doors and locks of the occupied hall, where demonstrators had barricaded themselves into early Tuesday morning.

In one clip, officers entered one Hamilton Hall room with weapons drawn.

The video also shows officers using “flash-bangs,” or stun grenades.

“It’s pretty unusual to use flashbangs for something like this absent some intel about a serious threat to officers,” said a veteran law-enforcement official.

“I’ve never seen them used for search warrants involving guns, let alone some barricaded college kids.”

A spokesperson for the NYPD didn’t immediately return a request for comment. Ben Chang, a spokesperson for Columbia University, declined to comment, deferring to the NYPD.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates from THE CITY.

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