Shortly before filming started, someone shot and killed a man hired to reserve production space for the show Law & Order: Organized Crime. The New York Police Department identified the victim as Johnny Pizarro, 31.
Police on Tuesday said that at approximately 5:15 a.m., officers responded to a call of a person shot in front of 229 North Henry Street in the Greenpoint neighborhood of Brooklyn.
“Upon arrival, officers observed a 31-year-old male with multiple gunshot wounds to the head and neck unconscious and unresponsive,” police said. “EMS responded and transported the victim to NYC Health + Hospitals / Woodhull, where he was pronounced deceased. No arrests have been made and the investigation is ongoing.”
A person, described as a “distraught colleague,” told The New York Post, “It was crazy.”
“I didn’t hear an argument or nothing,” said the person, who requested anonymity. “It was quiet, early morning. It was just a pop, and the [gunman] ran up towards Nassau [Avenue]. I only heard one bang, but I don’t know how many shots. I don’t even know who would do this or why.’”
Film was scheduled to start after 6 a.m. on Tuesday, according to WABC. Pizarro worked for a company holding parking spots for productions, a rather common site in the Greenpoint neighborhood.
“They’re just doing their job, just setting out cones and making sure cars are where they belong,” local man Ian Oberholtzer told the outlet. “Nothing out of the ordinary, and everyone’s very used to it by now.”
Local man Janus Czuj, 60, told the Post he initially mistook the real crime scene for something from the show: ” I tried to walk dogs here and saw the tape and thought, ‘Oh, it’s a movie.’ But this was a real shooting.”
“Sometimes we get hassled about parking, but we work with a lot of people in the communities,” one of Pizarro’s coworkers told the outlet. “They talk with us, we talk with them. We see what time you want to leave, and depending on what time our trucks come, we let them park. There’s never too much hassle with the parking.”
They arrive 24 hours in advance to begin clearing out parking, he said.
A crew member for “Law & Order: Organized Crime” was shot and killed early Tuesday morning in New York while on location for filming of the show’s third season.
— Variety (@Variety) July 19, 2022
A man was fatally shot in an ambush on the set of “Law & Order: Organized Crime” while working parking enforcement for the show, police say. https://t.co/SPNUNSeaFY
— NBC News (@NBCNews) July 19, 2022
Pizarro was a married father of three, according to the Post. He had just started his shift when he died.
“He was a great guy, always laughing or making somebody laugh, you know?” the coworker said.
A neighbor in the Ridgeway neighborhood of Queens called Pizarro “a really great guy.”
Czuj described him as a “good-looking, happy guy.”
“We were terribly saddened and shocked to hear that one of our crew members was the victim of a crime early this morning and has died as a result,” NBC and Universal Television said in a statement obtained by Law&Crime. “We are working with local law enforcement as they continue to investigate. Our hearts go out to his family and friends and we ask that you respect their privacy during this time.”
[Image via Fox 5 screengrab]
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