Man who allegedly shot girl was out on bond in gang assault case

The man busted in the New Year’s Eve shooting of a 14-year-old girl in Harlem was at the time out on bond in a gang assault case, Manhattan prosecutors said Wednesday.

Christopher Fuhrtz, 33, allegedly fired the gun — blasting the teenager in the right leg — as part of a bizarre bid to stop a fight between his girlfriend and the young victim’s mother, Assistant District Attorney Amber Strickland said at his arraignment in Manhattan Criminal Court .

The prosecutor requested that bail be set in the shooting case at $250,000 — which was granted — describing Fuhrtz as a “violent felon,” with four prior felony convictions and a history of skipping court dates.

He was also on parole at the time of the shooting after being released from prison in 2019 for a 2011 first-degree robbery conviction.

Fuhrtz’s other open case was from Dec. 4, 2020, when he was accused of kicking someone in the head and pulling a knife on them. He was indicted on first-degree gang assault charges and released in August after making bond.

About four months later, prosecutors allege Fuhrtz went to NYCHA’s Wagner Houses to attend a party hosted by his girlfriend, who got into a brawl with a woman there.

Christopher Fuhrtz was out on bond for a gang assault case when he allegedly shot a 14-year-old girl in Harlem on December 31, 2021.
Steven Hirsch for the NY Post

The scuffle spilled out into the courtyard, drawing a crowd, and the woman’s 14-year-old daughter and her friend arrived “to help break up the fight,” Strickland said.

Fuhrtz was allegedly “shooting in the direction” of the women when the teen was wounded, she said.

Video surveillance showed a man believed to Fuhrtz getting into the building’s elevator at around 11:54 pm on Dec. 30, wearing a black sweatshirt, blue jeans and gray Nike sneakers. He can be seen leaving the building with a woman and another person about an hour later, according to the criminal complaint.

Footage also showed the crowd gathered in the courtyard at around 1 am — and “what appeared to be a muzzle flash” and several people running away about three minutes later.

Police investigating the scene of where a teenager was shot in Harlem on December 31, 2021.
Christopher Sadowski

Fuhrtz was arrested Monday and charged with attempted murder, assault, two counts of criminal possession of a weapon and reckless endangerment.

His attorney, Jane Merrill, of Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem, argued her client had returned to court about a dozen times since he and his wife were able to make bond in the gang assault case.

In that case, a judge set bail at $10,000, $30,000 insurance company bond or $45,000 partially secured surety bond. It’s unclear which Fuhrtz posted.

The city Department of Correction did not return messages.

“He has and will continue to return to court,” Merrill insisted.

Fuhrtz allegedly fired his gun to break up a fight between the victim's mother and his girlfriend.
Fuhrtz allegedly fired his gun to break up a fight between the victim’s mother and his girlfriend.
Christopher Sadowski

Merrill also cast doubts on the claim that the man seen in the surveillance footage was Fuhrtz, saying, “I’m sure there are people in this courtroom right now that are wearing a black sweatshirt and jeans.”

Judge Rachel Pauley sided with prosecutors in setting $250,000 bail, saying she found Fuhrtz to be a serious flight risk after reviewing his lengthy record, history of bench warrants and the current case.

He’s due back in court Friday.

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