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Deadly shooting of teen in SoHo prompts increased security at nearby high schools

Friends, neighbors mourning loss of 16-year-old Mahki Brown in SoHo shooting
Friends, neighbors mourning loss of 16-year-old Mahki Brown in SoHo shooting 02:07

NEW YORK -- Security was increased at several SoHo high schools Wednesday after a 16-year-old was shot dead nearby Tuesday. 

Mahki Brown, a student at the Broome Street Academy Charter High School, was killed in a broad-daylight shooting between Spring and Dominick streets.

A swarm of school safety officers surrounded a block of high schools in SoHo on Wednesday, providing extra security, bringing in metal detectors and implementing bag checks.

There hadn't been a shooting in the neighborhood in more than 16 months. 

Mahki Brown's family, friends, neighbors in mourning

Brown commuted to the school from his home in East Flatbush. His heartbroken friends and neighbors said he traveled more than an hour each day to the school to better his future and pursue his dreams of playing basketball. 

"That's the one thing he loved, basketball," one neighbor said. "He was trying to keep up his grades so he could stay on the teams."

"It's sad that someone has to wake up and not see their kid alive the next morning, knowing that you leave to see them go to school, and they don't come back home," one neighbor said. 

Members of the apartment complex in East Flatbush where Brown lived are in mourning and trying to find ways to support Brown's mother. 

"That baby was killed. It was her only child. Do you know how much pain that women could be going through right now? It's unimaginable," one neighbor said. 

"It's gonna take a village to hold mommy up right now," another said. 

Search for suspects

Police say an argument broke out between two groups near Dominick and Spring streets around school dismissal time, just a block from Broome Street Academy Charter High School that Brown attended. 

Shots rang out and bullets struck Brown in the head and the leg, killing him.  

"We were in a women's literature class, doing poetry, and around 2:50 we heard a bang bang," high school student Lily Burch said. 

"Somebody pulled out on a stretcher, and I was like 'What's going on?' So I checked the Citizen app, and it said that somebody got shot," high school student Simon Galkin said.  

"Too many guns on the street. Too many kids to get access to guns," SoHo resident Thomas Libonati said. 

Police said they're still searching for two suspects, including the gunman who escaped on a Citi Bike. It's not clear who was the intended target.

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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