Officer accidentally fired gun while clearing Columbia building seizure — NYPD

Using a tactical vehicle, New York City police enter an upper floor of Hamilton Hall on the Columbia University campus in New York, April 30, 2024, after a building was taken over by anti-Israel, pro-Palestinian protesters earlier in the day. (AP Photo/Craig Ruttle)
Using a tactical vehicle, New York City police enter an upper floor of Hamilton Hall on the Columbia University campus in New York, April 30, 2024, after a building was taken over by anti-Israel, pro-Palestinian protesters earlier in the day. (AP Photo/Craig Ruttle)

The New York Police Department has disclosed that an officer accidentally discharged his gun inside a Columbia University administration building earlier this week while clearing out anti-Israel, pro-Palestinian protesters camped inside.

No one was injured by the officer’s mistake late Tuesday inside Hamilton Hall on the Columbia campus, the NYPD says in a statement released late last night, asserting that he was trying to use the flashlight attached to his gun at the time and instead fired a single round that struck a frame on the wall.

There were other officers but no students in the immediate vicinity, officials say. Body camera footage shows when the officer’s gun went off, but the district attorney’s office is conducting a review, a standard practice.

More than 100 people were taken into custody during the Columbia crackdown, just a fraction of the total arrests stemming from recent campus protests against Israel’s offensive in Gaza, which began following the October 7 massacre carried out by the Hamas terror group in southern Israel.

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