‘We got him’: Brooklyn subway shooting suspect Frank James has been arrested

62-year-old was taken into custody in NYC’s East Village on Wednesday afternoon

Bevan Hurley
Wednesday 13 April 2022 21:29
‘We got him’, New York City Mayor Eric Adams announces arrest of Frank James
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The suspect in the Brooklyn subway shootings has been arrested after he was spotted in a McDonald’s in the East Village.

Frank James, 62, will face federal terror charges over Tuesday’s attack on subway riders in Sunset Park which left 10 people with gunshot wounds and a further 18 injured.

Mr James was taken into custody ‘without incident’ at 1.42pm on Wednesday by NYPD patrol cops on the corner of St Mark’s Place and 1st Avenue in the East Village.

A witness called Crimestoppers to report they had seen Mr James at the McDonald’s on 1st Ave, and police units located him minutes later.

At a press conference on Wednesday, New York City Mayor Eric Adams said: “My fellow New Yorkers. We got him. We got him.”

Video appears to show moment Frank James was arrested in Manhattan

Mr Adams thanked “everyday New Yorkers” who called in tips to help locate the suspect.

“Thirty-three shots, but less than 30 hours later, we’re able to say, we got him.”

A video of the arrest posted by the NY_Actions Twitter account showed Mr Adams being placed in a patrol car while surrounded by officers on 1st Avenue between St Marks Place and East 9th St.

His hands were handcuffed behind his back, and he was wearing a black cap, dark cap and long dark trousers.

A second video posted to the NY_Actions account shows Mr James’ arrest being calmly led into the police car.

Several New Yorkers posted images of what they suspected was Mr James to social media on Wednesday.

Frank James being placed into the back of a police cruise in the East Village on Wednesday

Jack Griffin shared several pictures of the suspect at around 11am with the caption: “Possible frank james sighting?”

An hour later, he added: “I tried to call this in and reported to crime stoppers. Any thing else I should do?”

The official NYPD Crimestoppers account responded about two and a half hours after Mr Griffin’s initial tweet, asking for more information about the suspect’s whereabouts.

An eyewitness captured images of Frank James in the East Village on Wednesday and alerted Crimestoppers

Mr Griffin responded within minutes giving them a precise location of 45 Canal St on the Lower East Side.

Zack Tahhan, who installs security cameras, said he saw Mr James on a security camera walk by, and thought: “Oh s*** this guy, I phoned the police.”

Mr Tahhan, 21, said he chased after Mr James and tackled him, and waited with him until police arrived.

Zack Tahhan, 21, said he chased down and tackled the suspect after spotting him on a security camera

A witness who had been cycling past corroborated his story.

“I feel very happy because we catch this guy,” said Mr Tahhan, who said he had immigrated to the US from Syria and was living in New Jersey.

After an impromptu press conference in the East Village, he was driven off in a NYPD cruiser.

Mr Tahhan may be in line to receive a $50,000 reward leading to the suspect’s arrest.

NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell confirmed Mr James’ arrest had been as as direct result of tips to Crimestoppers.

“We were able to shrink his world quickly. There was nowhere left for him to run,” she said at the press conference.

US Attorney for the Eastern District of New York Breon Peace said Mr James would face federal charges of using terror to attack mass transit, and faces life in prison if convicted,

“Yesterday was a dark day for all of us,” Mr Peace said.

“But the bright spots of the incredible heroism of our fellow New Yorkers helping each other in a time of crisis, the quick response by our first responders, and the hard work by all of our law enforcement partners that has been ongoing truly shines bright.”

Mr James had nine prior arrests in New York dating from 1992 to 1998, including possession of burglary tools, a criminal sex act and theft of service, according to the NYPD.

He also has three arrests in New Jersey from 1991 to 2007 for trespass, larceny and disorderly conduct.

First responders at the scene of the attack at Sunset Park in Brooklyn on Tuesday

Prior to the assault on the subway, Mr James entered the Kingsway subway station, according to police, three blocks away from where a U-Haul rental van was recovered.

They believe after firing his weapon on the subway, he boarded a R train that had pulled into the station, went one stop up and exited a station at 7th Avenue at 9.15am.

The Glock 9mm used in the attack was purchased in 2011 in Ohio, a senior NYPD officer said.

Law enforcement quashed reports that Mr James had been interviewed by FBI counter-terrorist agents in New Mexico in 2019.

Mr James had been the subject of a massive manhunt since the attack on the Brooklyn subway just before 8.30am on Tuesday.

Hundreds of detectives had been scouring video for any trace of the missing suspect, they said.

Mr James is facing federal terror charges for allegedly shooting 10 people and wounding 18 more after firing 33 rounds into a N line train just before 8.30am on Tuesday.

A gun, magazines, gas canisters and fireworks were recovered from the scene. Investigators believe he was intending to fire more shots, but his gun jammed.

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