Brooklyn subway shooting suspect to remain in custody, undergoing psychiatric examination – national

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A federal judge on Thursday ordered the man accused of this week’s mass shooting in a New York subway to remain in custody and undergo a psychiatric examination while awaiting trial for one of the deadliest attacks on the city’s mass transit system.

Frank James, 62, made his first court appearance a day after his arrest in a lower court Manhattanaccused of injuring 30 people by detonating smoke grenades and spraying fire inside a subway car during rush hour Tuesday morning in Brooklyn.

James was represented by two public defenders as he was formally filed with a criminal complaint accusing him of one count of committing a terrorist attack or other violent attack against a mass transit system – a felony carrying a maximum penalty of life imprisonment.

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“The defendant terrifyingly shot passengers on a crowded subway, interrupting their morning commute in a way this city has not seen in more than 20 years,” we Attorney Sarah Winick told federal court in Brooklyn, in apparent reference to the September 11, 2001 attacks.

Arguing that James posed a “serious and continuing danger” to the public should he be released, prosecutors said in a court filing that he carried out a “violent, premeditated attack on unsuspecting passengers trapped underground with their attacker in a subway car.”

The mass shooting followed a string of violent crimes that alarmed commuters of one of the world’s largest subway systems, including cases of pushing passengers on subway tracks from station platforms.

James, dressed in beige prison clothes and wearing a blue surgical mask, only spoke briefly to say he understood the charges.

U.S. Magistrates Judge Rowan Mann has ordered James to be held at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, the main prison for defendants awaiting federal trial in New York City, and ordered the psychological evaluation requested by his attorneys.

The defense stressed that the examination was not intended to determine James’ eligibility to face trial but to determine his mental health for any treatment he would need.

The authorities did not provide any possible motive for the attack.

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Brooklyn shooting: NYC chief detective says motive investigation continues

Brooklyn shooting: NYC chief detective says motive investigation continues

Loud video under the microscope

Investigators said they were examining lengthy videos that James had recorded and apparently posted to YouTube, which included bigoted rants and comments on New York City’s mayor, homelessness and the subway system. The company said the YouTube account was deleted on Wednesday for violating the “community guidelines” of the online video platform.

James was arrested without incident Wednesday afternoon on a street in Manhattan’s East Village neighborhood, about 5 miles (8 km) from the site of Tuesday’s attack, capping a 30-hour manhunt for the single suspect. His attorneys told reporters after the hearing that James himself called the NYPD information line to turn himself in after seeing his picture on the news.

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New York City Police Department officers handcuffed the hands of subway shooting suspect Frank R. James, 62, in the East Village section of New York, Wednesday, April 13, 2022. James, accused of shooting 10 people on a subway in New York, has been arrested. Brooklyn on Wednesday was charged with a federal terrorist offense after a day-long manhunt and a call from a guide brought him to the police on a Manhattan street.

(AP Photo/PC Keyes)

“He called ‘Stoppers Crime’ for help,” Mia Eisner-Greenberg, an attorney with the Federal Defenders of New York, told reporters. “He told them where he is.” Earlier news reports said James made the call from McDonald’s in the East Village. He was taken to custody a short distance away.

Eisner-Greenberg described the attack as a tragedy, which unfolded when a Manhattan-bound N train was pulling into the 36th Street subway station in the Sunset Park community of Brooklyn.

Police said ten people were shot, five of whom were taken to hospital in a critical but stable condition. Prosecutors said that about 20 others were injured by smoke canisters fired by the attacker before the shooting or in a stampede of terrified commuters pouring from a subway car onto the platform. They were all expected to live.

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Investigators said the attacker apparently followed the panicked passengers to another train and boarded one stop toward Manhattan.

Surveillance video shows James exiting one of the stations north at about 14 minutes after the shooting. The photograph in the complaint shows him wearing a dark uniform, without the fluorescent orange jacket and yellow helmet he had worn earlier.

Video footage from the scene may be less comprehensive than it should be. New York Police Department (NYPDA statement on Wednesday said security cameras were down at the 36th Street station and two other subway stations on Tuesday.

Emergency personnel gather at the entrance to a subway station in the Brooklyn borough of New York on April 12.

John Minchillo/AFP

Investigators said they established James as a suspect after they found on the platform a credit card in his name and keys to a U-Haul truck he rented and left parked several blocks away.

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Authorities at the site also found a semi-automatic pistol used in the attack, along with three extended ammunition cabinets, a stove, an axe, a bag of fireworks and a gasoline container, according to police and court documents.

James Ho Bronx Original with recent titles in Philadelphia And Milwaukee. He had nine previous arrests in New York and three in New Jerseyaccording to the New York Police Department.

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In addition to the items found at the subway station, searches of James’ apartment and storage locker in Philadelphia revealed more pistol, rifle and ammunition stores, a Taser and a barreled pistol attachment for a silencer, FBI She said.

(Reporting by Luke Koh and Tyler Clifford in New York; Additional writing and reporting by Jonathan Allen in New York and Steve Gorman in Los Angeles; Editing by Raju Gopalakrishnan, Alistair Bell and Lincoln Fest.)

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