Four people were shot and wounded Wednesday afternoon at a deli on East 132nd Street in Harlem, police said.

Two of the victims, a male, 17, hit in the chest, and a man, 25, struck in the head, were shot about 3:30 p.m. inside the Twenty Stars Deli, west of Madison Avenue, police said.

Two additional victims, a woman, 24, and a man, 43, were wounded while outside the store. It was unclear if they were hit by stray rounds fired from inside the deli, said an NYPD spokesman. The woman was grazed on the arm and the man was grazed in the chest, according to the spokesman.

photosRecent NYC mug shotsDataNYC crime rates

None of the victims were identified and all were expected to survive, police said.

A high-ranking law enforcement official said investigators are looking into the possibility that an argument over a dice game sparked the gunfire. Dice games are showing up with increasing frequency as the flash point for shootings and homicides, the official said.

Anthony Goldstone, 24, heard a volley of 10 shots as he walked with his 1-year-old daughter. Four shots rang out, Goldstone said, and a second later, six more muffled ones. "When I heard the first shots, I checked my daughter before I checked myself," he said.

advertisement | advertise on newsday

Just across the street from the deli, Lloyd Irons was working when he heard the gunfire.

"I ducked behind a car," he said. "A lot of people were running. It was loud."

Ramona Reyes, who lives next door to the deli, said the area is no stranger to crime.

"That corner is always hot with activity," Reyes said, " . . . and there's always something going on there."

Wanda Machin, 35, who has lived in a housing project across the street from the deli for the past five years, said the neighborhood has become a haven for crime.

Get the Newsday Now newsletter!

The best of Newsday every day in your inbox.

"Way worse," said Machin, a medical secretary. "You hear more stories like this. It happens in this neighborhood more often. I've purchased in that store before. It could have been just anyone."

Machin said she is most worried about the safety of her children, ages 17, 4 and 2. People live in the areas despite the dangers because safer parts of the city are too expensive, she said.

"Makes you wonder if you should go starve somewhere else and be safer," Machin said.

With Alison Fox

and Karina Cuevas