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Gunman shoots employee inside Queens restaurant

Surveillance video shows gunman opening fire inside Queens restaurant
Surveillance video shows gunman opening fire inside Queens restaurant 02:19

NEW YORK -- A gunman shot an employee inside a restaurant in Queens on Saturday, sending customers running for cover.

Surveillance video from inside Boishakhi Restaurant shows people, including kids, who were sitting down eating and in line waiting for food, running out of the store and ducking for cover after a gunman opened fire.

"At first gunshot he did that side. We had a lot of customers inside. Once he move around, then he come here and shot and went behind my counter and did the third shot to one of my employees," said restaurant owner Abu Taher.

Taher says the gunman, who was wearing a mask and red hooded sweatshirt, fired three shots, and at one point, even went behind the counter.

"He didn't say anything. He just come and shot and ran away," Taher said.

He tells CBS2 one bullet hit an employee in the upper thigh.

Nelson Burgos, who works nearby, jumped into action.

"The guy didn't even know he got shot until we saw him bleeding and then from there helped him I just helped him and I called 911," he said. "He seemed calm. I kept him calm and I just told him wait for ambulance, it will be alright. He wasn't bleeding too crazy, so I think he'll be alright."

It happened near 36th Avenue and 29th Street in Astoria around 3:30 p.m.

Police say the shooter took off running.

While the motive is still being investigated, sources say the gunman got into an argument with an employee in the store earlier in the week.

Now, the shattered glass, bullet holes and half-eaten food left behind is a grim reminder to the immigrant family who runs the restaurant that gun violence can affect you when you least expect it.

"Definitely scared, you know. It's a very small business," Taher said. "I'm really scared to run a small business in New York City. It's not safe, actually. We are not safe. Our life is not safe."

Police are reviewing surveillance video as they continue to search for the gunman. 

Anyone with any information is asked to call the NYPD's Crime Stoppers hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477), or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). You can also submit a tip via their website or via DM on Twitter, @NYPDTips. All calls are kept confidential.    

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