(NewsNationNow) — The New York Police Department released footage of a police-involved shooting in which a gunman was fatally shot in the head by police on the steps of a landmark New York City cathedral.
Officers had responded to the scene after the man began firing two semiautomatic handguns at the end of a Christmas choral concert just before 4 p.m. on Sunday at the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine, mother church of the Episcopal Diocese of New York.
A 45-minute concert held on the cathedral steps had just concluded and a crowd of several hundred people was drifting away when the gunman started shooting, sending people running down Amsterdam Avenue screaming and diving to the sidewalk.
A detective, a sergeant and a police officer who were at the event fired 15 rounds, killing the man, New York Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said.
The gunman was dressed in black with his face obscured by a white baseball cap and a face mask. He held a silver pistol in one hand and a black one in the other as he stepped from behind a stone column at the top of the staircase.
Witnesses told police the man was yelling “kill me” as he fired, Shea said. The man’s name was not immediately released.
The man had a lengthy criminal history and was carrying a backpack containing a can of gasoline, rope, wire, tape, knives and a well-worn Bible, Shea said. The police commissioner called the actions of the officers “heroic.”
It wasn’t clear if the gunman was aiming at people or firing in the air.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.