Politics

Subway capturing investigation: What we find out about suspect Frank R. James


SUNSET PARK, Brooklyn (WABC) — Frank R. James, recognized by police because the suspect within the Brooklyn subway capturing that injured 29 folks in the course of the top of the morning rush hour Tuesday, is now in custody.

Authorities imagine he’s the person who donned a fuel masks, set off a smoke bomb and then fired 33 shots on a Manhattan-bound N train, wounding 10 folks and leaving almost two dozen others damage within the ensuing chaos.

Investigators have been inspecting social media movies by which the 62-year-old decried america as a racist place awash in violence and typically railed in opposition to Mayor Eric Adams.

“This nation was born in violence, it’s kept alive by violence or the threat thereof and it’s going to die a violent death,” he stated in a single video. “There’s nothing going to stop that.”

RELATED | Brooklyn subway shooting heightens fears about transit safety

NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell known as the posts “concerning,” and officers tightened safety for Adams, who was already isolating following a constructive COVID-19 check Sunday.

James was taken into custody Wednesday after being noticed by bystanders wandering across the East Village.

The shooter fled within the chaos Tuesday, forsaking the gun, prolonged magazines, a hatchet, detonated and undetonated smoke grenades, a black rubbish can, a rolling cart, gasoline and the important thing to a U-Haul van.

That key led investigators to James, who has addresses in Philadelphia and Wisconsin, NYPD Chief of Detectives James Essig stated. The van was later discovered, unoccupied, close to a station the place investigators decided the gunman had entered the subway system.

The ATF decided that James purchased the gun used within the subway capturing in a pawn store in Columbus, Ohio, in 2011.

Investigators imagine James drove up from Philadelphia on Monday and have reviewed surveillance video displaying a person matching his bodily description popping out of the van early Tuesday morning, the official stated. Different video exhibits James getting into a subway station in Brooklyn with a big bag, the official stated.

After the capturing, Essig stated James boarded an R prepare that pulled into the station and went one cease earlier than exiting on the twenty fifth Road station. After that, James was seen once more at a Park Slope subway cease just below an hour later earlier than fading from view.

The gun and the acquisition of a fuel masks on eBay are among the many items of proof that elevated James from particular person of curiosity to suspect, sources instructed ABC Information.

Investigators additionally grew extra comfy calling James a suspect after they re-interviewed witnesses who initially gave a top description of the gunman that didn’t match James’ 6-foot-2 body.

Authorities have not less than one in all James’ bank cards and are in a position to observe his buy historical past.

Phantom Fireworks confirmed in a press release that James bought merchandise in Wisconsin believed to have been left behind within the 36 Road subway station.

At this early stage of the investigation, authorities have found no significant felony arrests in James’ vital historical past, solely various misdemeanor expenses.

Nonetheless, rambling, profanity-filled YouTube movies apparently posted by James, who’s Black, are replete with violent language and bigoted feedback, some in opposition to different Black folks.

In a single video, posted a day earlier than the assault, he criticizes crime in opposition to Black folks and says drastic motion is required.

“You got kids going in here now taking machine guns and mowing down innocent people,” James says. “It’s not going to get better until we make it better,” he stated, including that he thought issues would solely change if sure folks have been “stomped, kicked and tortured” out of their “comfort zone.”

RELATED | Witnesses describe chaotic scene after NYC subway shootings

A number of movies point out New York Metropolis’s subways.

A February 20 video says the mayor and Governor Kathy Hochul’s plan to deal with homelessness and security within the subway system “is doomed for failure” and refers to himself as a “victim” of the town’s psychological well being applications. A January 25 video criticizes Adams’ plan to finish gun violence.

(The Related Press contributed to this report)

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