GLOVERSVILLE - A man was shot in the face early this afternoon behind a North Main Street store, and police are searching the Capital District for the man who pulled the trigger.
The victim, described by police as a black man in his early 20s, was shot with a small-caliber weapon around 1:45 p.m. today behind Naif's Discount Beverage, police said. He was taken by ambulance to Nathan Littauer Hospital in Gloversville where he was interviewed. He is expected to survive, police Capt. John Sira said.
Authorities have begun a wide search the suspect or suspects - one or two black men who are considered armed and dangerous, according to police reports.
A police investigator peers into a blood-streaked white sport utility vehicle near the location where a man was shot this afternoon near Naif's Discount Beverage in Gloversville. Photo by Bill Trojan/The Leader-Herald
Gloversville police swarmed the area of the shooting, setting up yellow crime tape but the store remained open.
In a back lot, officers examined a Chevrolet Suburban sport utility vehicle where blood was splattered on the driver's side door.
Sira said it appeared the assailant tried to kill the victim. Police do not know if the shooting was drug-related or if it was connected to another shooting in the city two weeks ago.
Sira said the victim, who he did not name, was found on Fifth Avenue.
"He was in here before it happened," said Ed Abraham, son of the Naif's owner.
He said his mother, Karen Abraham, who lives in the back of the building, heard the shot and "thought it was a firecracker."
"His nose was pretty chewed up," Ed Abraham said of the victim, who was helped and briefly washed off inside the store.
Abraham added, "This city has changed dramatically in the past 20 years."
He was worried his family's store was going to get bad publicity.
Spectators were at the scene during the afternoon, lined up on North Main Street and on Union Street on the other side of the Naif's lot.
Today's incident was the third violent crime in the city this month. At 12:30 a.m. Aug. 3, city resident LaTerence Wilson was stabbed after an altercation on Hamilton Street. A man who police have not identified is the primary suspect, police said. He is being held by the New York City Police Department on unrelated attempted-murder charges.
Codie Hayward was shot once in the chest and twice in the right leg at his Littauer Place home by an unknown suspect, police said. Hayward previously was shot in the face in 2007.
More coverage will be in Tuesday's edition of The Leader-Herald.