NYPD says no shooter after sound of motorcycle causes scare in Times Square

ByEyewitness News via WABC logo
Wednesday, August 7, 2019
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Hundreds of people fled in Times Square after hearing motorcycles backfiring that sounded like gunfire.

TIMES SQUARE, Manhattan -- The NYPD reassured the public there was no active shooter in Times Square Tuesday night after the loud backfiring of motorcycles sent hundreds of people running for their lives.

The incident just before 10 p.m. led people to believe it was gunshots. People began to run and even shelter in stores.

There were no shots fired, but the loud noise did cause a great deal of alarm following the mass shootings over the weekend in El Paso and Dayton.

"All of a sudden I heard this kind of muffled pop and said, 'What was that?,' and I looked over and there was just a sea of people running," said witness Dylan Probert. "I had one or two seconds to think, 'Is this really happening?'"

The NYPD received multiple 911 calls but tweeted that there was no active shooter, saying, "Please don't panic. The Times Square area is very safe!"

According to a customer, the Disney store directed customers to the back as a precautionary measure.

FDNY says nine people had minor injuries. Of those, six were taken to area hospitals.