Man arrested in pellet gun shooting of NY mayor's guard

AP News
Posted: Aug 24, 2015 11:00 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — A man accused of using a pellet gun to shoot a New York City officer assigned to guard the mayor has been arraigned on assault, reckless endangerment and other charges.

Police say 19-year-old Michael Verbitsky was arrested Monday for the Sunday night shooting outside Gracie Mansion, where the mayor and his family live. The officer was struck in the back with a pellet and suffered minor injuries.

Verbitsky has been released on $10,000 bail. His lawyer calls the shooting accidental.

Mayor Bill de Blasio (dih BLAH'-zee-oh) wasn't home at the time of the shooting. He says he has "tremendous faith" in the New York Police Department.

Police say Verbitsky has previous arrests for robbery and graffiti. Investigators believe he also used the pellet gun to break windows in the same neighborhood earlier this summer.