The New York police continued, Wednesday, April 13, to search for the shooter who sowed chaos the day before in the subway and injured at least twenty-three people, including ten by bullets.
As millions of workers resumed commuting to work, city mayor Eric Adams called on residents to be “vigilant”while excluding at this stage that the shooter has an accomplice. “He seems to have acted alone”declared on the MSNBC channel the Democratic mayor, who took office on 1is January, with the promise to strengthen the fight against crime in the megalopolis.
The noose has also tightened around a man, simply presented on Tuesday by the police as a “person of interest” for the investigation – then qualified, on Wednesday, as « suspect » by the mayor of New York. On Tuesday, investigators released photos of the man, saying he rented the pickup truck found in Brooklyn and found a key where the shooting took place.
’62-year-old black man’ suspected
On Wednesday morning, New Yorkers received messages on their phones giving the description of this “62-year-old black man”, asking to alert the police to give any information useful to the investigation. The man has posted various videos on YouTube, where he delivers long, sometimes virulent political tirades and criticizes Mr. Adams, pushing the police to increase security around the mayor.
If stalking the shooter, described as ” dangerous “ the day before, continues, millions of New Yorkers did indeed resume transportation to go to work on Wednesday, some posting selfies on social networks to show that life was returning to normal. “I don’t really have a choice, I have to take the metro. I hope it will be safer today. It looked a little emptier”explained a passenger, who lives in the neighboring state of New Jersey.
The Twitter account of the New York subway, one of the largest networks in the world, announced early Wednesday morning the return of a “full service” on all lines, especially at station 36th Street in southern Brooklyn, where the shooter raged and where several lines pass.
The number of homicides on the rise since the pandemic
Tuesday morning, around 8:30 a.m. (2:30 p.m. in Paris), at a time when the metro trains are crowded, the individual, who was wearing a gas mask, lit two devices which smoked the car, then fired at the passengers as the train entered the station. “We were really lucky that it wasn’t much more serious”underlined the chief of the police of New York, Keechant Sewell, summarizing the relief of the authorities after this attack where the suspect fired 33 bullets.
“All you see is black smoke, and I turned to the right, and I saw this guy with a mask”one of the victims testified on CNN from his hospital bed. “The shooting lasted about a minute, I would say about ten shots (…). I’ve never heard so many shots come out of a handgun. (…) He probably had extended magazines or another firearm.”, added this man, shot in the knee. At the scene, investigators found a handgun and three magazines.
Tuesday’s attack came as New York has faced a spike in crime since the Covid-19 pandemic, with the number of homicides rising from 319 in 2019 to 488 in 2021, although the annual toll remains well below the more than 2,000 per year recorded in the early 1990s.