UNITED STATES NEWS

Gunman who shot and wounded 10 riders on New York City subway to be sentenced

Oct 4, 2023, 9:10 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — A man who sprayed the inside of a New York City subway train with gunfire and then slipped away in a stunned crowd is set to be sentenced Thursday in the morning rush-hour attack, which wounded 10 people and set off a citywide manhunt.

Frank James, 64, pleaded guilty to terrorism charges in the April 12, 2022, mass shooting aboard a Manhattan-bound train.

Prosecutors have asked for a life sentence, saying James spent years carefully planning the shooting in order to “inflict maximum damage.”

The gunman’s attorneys have asked for a reduced sentence of 18 years, saying James didn’t intend to kill anyone and suffered from serious mental illness.

Disguised as a construction worker, James waited until the train was between stations, denying his targets a chance to flee. Then he ignited multiple smoke bombs and unleashed a barrage of bullets from a 9mm handgun at panicked riders in the crowded train car.

The attack wounded victims ranging in age from 16 to 60 as the train pulled into a station in Sunset Park, Brooklyn.

As emergency responders tended to the victims, James walked calmly out of the subway station and vanished. The search for the gunman lasted for roughly 30 hours. Police identified James as a suspect relatively quickly, using a key to a rented moving van left behind on the bloodied subway car. He was eventually arrested in Manhattan’s East Village after calling a police tip line to turn himself in.

“The fact that no one was killed by the defendant’s 32 gunshots can only be described as luck as opposed to the defendant’s intentional choice,” Brooklyn prosecutors wrote in a memo to U.S. District Judge William Kuntz.

The attack stunned New Yorkers, heightened anxiety about safety in the transit system and prompted local officials to add additional surveillance cameras and police to the trains.

Before the shooting, James, who is Black, posted dozens of videos online under the moniker “Prophet of Doom,” ranting about race, violence, his struggles with mental illness and a host of unnamed forces he claimed were out to get him.

In one 2019 video, James alluded to a pending conflict in his hometown, stating that “it’s going to be very interesting what happens in New York with me.” By that time, prosecutors allege, James was already in the process of planning the subway shooting.

When James pleaded guilty to the terrorism charges earlier this year, he said he only intended to cause serious bodily injury, not death.

His attorney, Mia Eisne-Grynberg, suggested that while James may have initially planned to kill people, he changed his mind in the heat of the moment.

“In a society where, sadly, we learn nearly every day that mass shooters who intend to kill readily achieve their goals, it is far more likely that Mr. James lacked that specific intent than that he simply failed in his mission,” Eisner-Grynberg wrote in a sentencing memo.

Referencing the defendant’s abusive childhood in the Bronx and his ongoing struggles with both alcoholism and paranoid schizophrenia, she added, “Mr. James is not evil. He is very, very ill.”

Prosecutors, however, say the trajectory of the bullets show that James aimed at the “center mass” of riders for maximum lethality. They say James only stopped firing his semi-automatic Glock pistol because the gun jammed.

James has spent the past 17 months held at the Metropolitan Detention Center without bail. He was previously forced to appear in court after refusing to leave his cell. On Tuesday, Judge Kuntz said U.S. Marshals should use all necessary force in order to produce James for the sentencing.

United States News

Associated Press

University of Michigan didn’t assess if Israel-Hamas war protests made environment hostile, feds say

WASHINGTON (AP) — The University of Michigan failed to assess whether protests and other incidents on campus in response to the Israel-Hamas war created a hostile environment for students, staff and faculty, according to the results of an investigation by the U.S. Education Department announced Monday. The department’s Office of Civil Rights investigated 75 instances […]

35 seconds ago

Associated Press

Crews working in sweltering conditions and steep terrain battle major Los Angeles-area wildfire

GORMAN, Calif. (AP) — Strong winds pushed flames through dry brush in mountains along Interstate 5 north of Los Angeles, and officials warned residents in the wildfire’s path to be prepared to leave if it explodes in size again. Los Angeles County’s first major wildfire of the year swiftly grew to nearly 23 square miles […]

7 hours ago

Associated Press

Woman holding large knife at Denver intersection shot and killed by police, chief says

DENVER (AP) — Officers shot and killed a woman who was holding a large, hunting-style knife at an intersection in downtown Denver on Sunday, police said. Officers used a Taser on the woman twice but she began advancing toward them as they tried to back up from her, Denver police Chief Ron Thomas said a […]

12 hours ago

Associated Press

2 killed when vintage plane crashes during Father’s Day event at Southern California airfield

CHINO, Calif. (AP) — Two people were killed aboard a vintage plane that crashed and burst into flames near a Southern California airfield during a weekend Father’s Day event hosted by an air museum, authorities said Sunday. The Federal Aviation Administration said the twin-engine Lockheed 12A crashed shortly after 12:30 p.m. Saturday, just west of […]

16 hours ago

Associated Press

2 people seriously injured after small plane crashes near interstate south of Denver

LARKSPUR, Colo. (AP) — Two people were hospitalized with serious injuries after their small plane crashed near Interstate 25 in Colorado on Sunday, officials said. The plane crashed in a field just off I-25 near Larkspur, about 40 miles (64 kilometers) south of Denver, after it apparently hit a sign on the highway, causing it […]

17 hours ago

Associated Press

Kansas lawmaker’s law license suspended over conflicts of interest in murder case

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — A Republican Kansas lawmaker who already dropped his re-election campaign last month after he was arrested in a traffic stop has now been barred from practicing law for at least a year for mishandling conflicts of interest in a murder case. The Kansas Supreme Court ruled that state Rep. Carl Maughan […]

17 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...

Midwestern University

Midwestern University Clinic visits boost student training & community health

Going to a Midwestern University Clinic can help make you feel good in more ways than one.

...

Collins Comfort Masters

Here’s how to be worry-free when your A/C goes out in the middle of summer

PHOENIX -- As Arizona approaches another hot summer, Phoenix residents are likely to spend more time indoors.

...

Midwestern University

Midwestern University Clinics: transforming health care in the valley

Midwestern University, long a fixture of comprehensive health care education in the West Valley, is also a recognized leader in community health care.

Gunman who shot and wounded 10 riders on New York City subway to be sentenced