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Manhunt continues after 10 people shot in Brooklyn subway; police identify person of interest

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Subway shooting person of interest identified
Police identify person of interest in Brooklyn subway shooting 18:59

The manhunt stretched into a second day after a terrifying attack on a subway train in Brooklyn, New York, during the Tuesday morning commute. Ten people were shot and wounded when the gunman opened fire, authorities said, and 13 people were being treated for smoke inhalation from a smoke bomb or other injuries from the panic that ensued.

"We are truly fortunate that this was not significantly worse than it is," New York Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell said at a news conference Tuesday evening. She said three women and seven men were shot, but none of the injuries are considered life-threatening.

Police said they had identified a person of interest, but did not name him as a suspect. They said no one was in custody. 

Sewell said the suspect was described as a Black male, approximately 5 feet, 5 inches tall with a heavy build who was wearing a construction-type vest and a gray hooded sweatshirt.

Authorities located a U-Haul in Brooklyn late Tuesday afternoon after a key to the vehicle was found at the scene of the shooting. Officials identified the renter of the U-Haul as Frank R. James, 62, and called him a person of interest in the case. The van was unoccupied when it was found.

Sewell gave more details about the shooting incident, saying the gunman put on what appeared to be a gas mask on a Manhattan-bound subway train in Brooklyn just before 8:24 a.m. and tossed two canisters which filled the train with smoke. The gunman then opened fire, striking people on the subway and the 36th Street station platform, Sewell said. Thirty-three shots were fired in total.

Police said a 9mm semi-automatic handgun was recovered. Officials said a hatchet, fireworks and gasoline were also found.

"We do not know the motive at this time, but we're not ruling anything out," Sewell said.

Sewell said people with photos and videos of the shooting or any related information were encouraged to contact the police department's Crime Stoppers Program.

A law enforcement source tells CBS News a Glock semi-automatic handgun that had apparently jammed, and a tote-like bag with a hatchet, pepper spray, two gas canisters and a smoke grenade were found at the scene. There was a heavy police presence throughout the day in the Sunset Park neighborhood where the attack took place.

Photos from the scene showed people tending to bloodied passengers lying on the floor of the station.

Wounded people on subway platform
Several people were wounded in a shooting at a subway station in the Sunset Park neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York, during the morning rush hour on April 12, 2022. Armen Hayrapetyan

The MTA said regular subway service has resumed on the D, N, and R subway lines after hours of disruptions, and trains are once again making stops at the 36th Street station.

President Biden acknowledged the shooting Tuesday afternoon during a speech in Iowa.

"My wife Jill and I are praying for those that are injured and all those touched by that trauma," he said. "And we're grateful for all the first responders who jumped into action, including civilians, civilians who didn't hesitate help their fellow passengers and try to shield them." 

The president said his team has been in touch with New York City Mayor Eric Adams and the police commissioner, and that federal investigators are working closely with the NYPD.

-Pat Milton contributed reporting. The Associated Press contributed reporting.

 

Person of interest appears to have posted videos online ranting about various topics, including NYC Mayor Eric Adams

Frank James, the man identified as a person of interest in the shooting investigation, appears to have posted a series of videos online in recent weeks in which he airs a host of grievances, including some directed at New York City Mayor Eric Adams. The man who appears to be James does not seem to threaten Adams, although he does complain about the number of homeless people in New York City and criticizes the mayor's policies.

The man also commented on how easy he felt it would be to commit crimes in the subway system, regardless of an increase in police presence.

Other topics touched on in the videos include Russian President Vladimir Putin, the war in Ukraine and various personal grievances with acquaintances.

By Jordan Freiman
 

NYC mayor's security increased

New York City Mayor Eric Adams' security has been increased, the mayor's spokesperson, Fabien Levy, tweeted Tuesday night. Levy wrote that Frank James, who police identified as a person of interest in the investigation, has "made past comments" about Adams.

The extra security measures were taken "out of an abundance of caution," Levy added.

No other information about the past comments was provided.

By Sophie Reardon
 

$50,000 reward offered in case

A $50,000 reward is being offered for information leading to the arrest of the suspect in the subway shooting. The reward was announced by the Metropolitan Transit Authority, Transit Workers Union Local 100 and New York City Police Foundation. 

"We are doing everything we can to catch the man responsible for this heinous attack on our riders," said MTA Chair and CEO Janno Lieber.

Anyone with information was urged to call CrimeStoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS.

By Paula Cohen
 

Authorities identify "person of interest" in shooting

Authorities identified a person of interest in the case as Frank R. James, 62. During a press conference Tuesday evening, police said investigators found keys to a U-Haul van at the scene that James had rented, and the van was later located in Brooklyn.

James has addresses in both Wisconsin and Philadelphia, and police say they believe he rented the van in Philadelphia.

Officials clarified that James is not a suspect but a "person of interest." 

They said they do not have a suspect in custody, and have not identified a motive for the shooting.

By Sophie Reardon
 

23 people injured, including 10 who were shot; all injuries are non-life-threatening

Ten people were shot, including seven men and three women, and 13 others were injured in the shooting. None of those injuries are considered life-threatening, authorities said during a press conference Tuesday evening.

"We are truly fortunate that this was not significantly worse than it is," New York Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell said.

By Sophie Reardon
 

Mayor Eric Adams discusses subway shooting

In an interview with "CBS Evening News" anchor and managing editor Norah O'Donnell on Tuesday, New York City Mayor Eric Adams said law enforcement is "following a number of leads" following the subway shooting earlier in the day.

"What we don't want to do is put out any misinformation. We want to be thorough in the information we give so that the public can assist us in making this apprehension," he said.

Adams said that investigators attempted to retrieve surveillance video, but could not confirm whether there was a malfunction with the camera system. 

"I know we were having a feed problem," he said. 

Adams added that subway stations have added police presence in the wake of the violence. 

"Today, immediately, we're going to double down on our patrol strength," he said. 

Mayor Eric Adams on Brooklyn subway shooting 02:42
By Caitlin Yilek
 

Police locate U-Haul linked to suspected shooter in Brooklyn

Authorities have located the U-Haul they believe the shooting suspect may have been using. The van, which was found in Brooklyn, was unoccupied, according to the Associated Press.

A law enforcement official told the AP investigators found a credit card at the scene of Tuesday's shooting that led them to identify a person of interest. The same credit card was allegedly used to rent the U-Haul van that police located in Brooklyn. 

CBS New York reported that police, fire department and bomb squad investigators were at the scene where the U-Haul was found.

U-Haul van being investigated
A U-Haul van being investigated in Brooklyn, which was believed to be linked to the suspect in the subway station shooting. CBS New York
 

NYC transit dealing with major disruptions

Trains across New York City are experiencing major delays as transit authorities and emergency responders continue to deal with Tuesday morning's shooting. 

According to the MTA, several Brooklyn bound trains on the B, W, D, N, R and A lines have been partially suspended or rerouted. A major police presence remains near the shooting site on 36th street. 

Limited Coney Island-bound D and N service from Manhattan has been restored but R service service between Manhattan and Brooklyn remains suspended. 

While transit authorities continue to work through the delays, NYC Ferry will waive fares on the South Brooklyn route for the remainder of the day in order to "provide additional service during the evening commute," according to officials

By Zoe Christen Jones
 

Biden says he's "praying for those that are injured"

President Biden spoke about the subway attack Tuesday afternoon during a visit to Iowa. "We're not letting up on it until we find out and we find the perpetrator," he said.

Mr. Biden said, "My wife Jill and I  are praying for those that are injured and all those touched by that trauma. And we're grateful for all the first responders who jumped into action, including civilians — civilians who didn't hesitate to help their fellow passengers, and try to help them. 

"My team has been in touch with Mayor Adams and New York's police commissioner and the Department of Justice and the FBI are working closely with the NYPD on the ground. We are going to continue to stay in close contact with New York authorities as we learn more about the situation over the coming hours and days."

 

Authorities looking for U-Haul that suspect may be using

Authorities are looking for a U-Haul with Arizona license plate AL31408, a law enforcement source confirmed to CBS News. They believe the suspect wanted in connection with the shooting may be using it.

The source also added more details about what was recovered from the scene of the shooting: a Glock semi-automatic handgun that had apparently jammed, and a tote-like bag with a hatchet, pepper spray, two gas canisters and a smoke grenade.

Subway shooting suspect - bag found
A bag recovered from the scene of the Brooklyn subway shooting included a  hatchet, pepper spray, two gas canisters and a smoke grenade, a law enforcement source said.
By Pat Milton
 

Camera system in subway station had "some form of malfunction," mayor says

A security camera system in the 36th Street & 4th Avenue subway station appeared to malfunction, New York City Mayor Eric Adams told WCBS 880 radio. He said the issue is under investigation.

"The preliminary review stated that at that particular station there appeared to have been some form of malfunction with the camera system," Adams told the station. "That is still under investigation. We are communicating with the MTA to find out was it throughout the entire station or was it just one camera? So that's still something that we are looking into."

By Sophie Reardon
 

5 schools sheltering in place until dismissal

Five schools will continue sheltering in place until dismissal, the city's Education Department said.

The department said dismissal would be managed for PS 24, Sunset Park High School, PS 371 and two Little Brooklyn Pre-K Center locations. Principals would be contacting parents about specifics, the department said.

The police department will provide support for getting students home, the department said.

The shelter-in-place order was lifted for other schools, which will have a normal dismissal.

By Alex Sundby
 

Witness speaks about subway shooting

Witness speaks about Brooklyn subway shooting 03:30

Konrad Aderer witnessed the aftermath of the shooting and described what he saw to CBS News. Watch the interview in the video above.

 

Subway attack witnesses recall "smoke and blood and people screaming"

Witnesses recalled the frantic moments after Tuesday's shooting.

"My subway door opened into calamity. It was smoke and blood and people screaming," eyewitness Sam Carcamo told radio station 1010 WINS, saying he saw a gigantic billow of smoke pouring out of the N train once the door opened.

Subway-Shooting
A person is aided in a subway car in the Brooklyn borough of New York, after a gunman filled a train with smoke and then opened fire, leaving multiple people wounded, April 12, 2022. Will B. Wylde / AP

Read more here.

 

People with photos, videos of shooting encouraged to contact police

New York Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell said people with photos and videos of the shooting or any related information were encouraged to contact the police department's Crime Stoppers Program.

By Alex Sundby
 

Shooting not being investigated as act of terrorism

The shooting wasn't being investigated as an act of terrorism at this time, New York Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell said. "We do not know the motive at this time, but we're not ruling anything out," she said.

By Alex Sundby
 

NYPD commissioner releases description of suspect

New York Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell said the suspect was described as a Black male, approximately 5 feet, 5 inches tall with a heavy build who was wearing a green construction-type vest and a gray hooded sweatshirt.

Read more here.

By Alex Sundby
 

10 people shot; 5 in critical but stable condition

Authorities said Tuesday afternoon at least 10 people were shot and six suffered other injuries in the incident. Five people were in critical but stable condition, the fire department said.

By Alex Sundby
 

Shelter-in-place order for schools in the area

A shelter-in-place order was issued for schools in a 1-mile radius of the shooting, CBS New York reported.

 

Biden, Garland briefed on shooting

President Biden and Attorney General Merrick Garland have been briefed on Tuesday's shooting, officials said.

Jeff Pegues contributed reporting.

By Alex Sundby
 

Suspect said to be wearing construction vest, gas mask

A law enforcement source tells CBS News the NYPD is looking for a suspect who was said to be wearing a reflective construction vest and a gas mask.

 

Smoke bomb device found at subway station

There's a heavy police presence at the station in the Sunset Park neighborhood, at 36th Street and Fourth Avenue. The NYPD reported a smoke condition at the station. An NYPD official tells CBS News a smoke bomb device was found.

 

At least five people shot, 13 injured

At least five people were shot and 13 injured, with some being treated for smoke inhalation from a possible smoke bomb and other injuries from the panic that ensued, CBS New York reports.

By Alex Sundby
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