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ARRESTED: Brooklyn subway shooting suspect with Wisconsin ties taken into custody

Frank R. James
Posted at 1:00 PM, Apr 13, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-13 23:10:41-04

BROOKLYN, N.Y. — Frank R. James, the man named as the suspect in Tuesday's Brooklyn subway mass shooting, has been arrested, the New York Police Department announced.

The New York police said Tuesday evening that Frank R. James, 62, was a person of interest in the subway shooting. On Wednesday, police named him as a suspect. Police say James shot and injured 10 people in the subway attack. Five of them are reportedly in critical condition. Six other people suffered various injuries including smoke inhalation.

According to the Associated Press, two law enforcement officials say the person who tipped off police to the whereabouts of the man wanted in the Brooklyn subway shooting was the suspect himself.

APTOPIX Subway-Shooting
New York City Police Department personnel gather at the entrance to a subway stop in the Brooklyn borough of New York, Tuesday, April 12, 2022. Multiple people were shot and injured Tuesday at a subway station in New York City during a morning rush hour attack that left wounded commuters bleeding on a train platform. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

Arrest and investigation

James was taken into custody by officers in New York on Wednesday. James was spotted by two patrol officers who thought he might be the suspect. He reportedly did not resist when being placed under arrest.

Police say they received a Crimestoppers tip today, saying James was at a McDonald's. When officers arrived, they did not find him there but were able to find him on a street corner nearby.

"We were able to shrink his world quickly. There was nowhere left to run," said New York City commissioner Keechant Sewell.

The arrest comes hours after law enforcement officials said they had linked the gun found at the scene to James. The 9mm Glock was bought in 2011 in Ohio, investigators said. They have also said the gas mask used by the suspect at the scene was purchased on eBay. However, an eBay spokesperson has not confirmed the purchase.

Police believe James rented a U-Haul truck before the shooting. The truck was recovered in Brooklyn on Tuesday.

Frank will face a federal charge for terrorist and violent attacks on a mass transportation system. He will be arraigned in Brooklyn and could face up to life in prison.

Authorities were examining social media videos in which the 62-year-old decried the United States as a racist place awash in violence and sometimes railed against the city’s mayor, Eric Adams.

In one YouTube video uploaded Monday, James reportedly said he thought about killing people who hurt him, CNN reported.

Subway Shooting
Residents are allowed to return to their homes as emergency personnel including the FBI search a moving van during an ongoing investigation in the Brooklyn borough of New York, Tuesday, April 12, 2022. Multiple people were shot and injured Tuesday at a subway station in Brooklyn during a morning rush hour attack that left wounded commuters bleeding on a train platform as others ran screaming. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)


Connection to Wisconsin

James' has several Wisconsin connections, including his last known address, which was on Milwaukee's north side. A sign posted on the mailbox showed his name and requested mail be forwarded to a P.O. box.

Shortly before 1:00 on Wednesday a man led three others into the home. They declined to say whether they were with law enforcement or not, but spent less than 15 minutes inside. As the men left the home, the person with the keys said they were there for a consent to search. The men were not outwardly carrying anything as they left the building.

Pastor Eugene Yarbrough said that one winter he hit James' car and accident and it was resolved without any issues. Yarbrough has led the church next door to James' home for 20 years.

"His personality was fine. He seemed mild mannered to me," Yarbrough said.

The pastor added that when a church member saw the news they remembered seeing James load a U-Haul.

"If he would've come to me yes I would've talked with him I would've prayed with him. I don't know what his issues were."

The company that manages the home where James was staying told TMJ4 News that they are working with the FBI.

Jessica Rehorst said she met James in October of 2020 when he applied for a unit near 6th and Center.

"He said he wanted a place big enough for himself, his bed and somewhere he could play Xbox," Rehorst said.

Rehorst says the ownership of the home has since changed. Her employer, D and R Property Management, no longer manages the property.

Rehorst recognized James when authorities named him a suspect.

"I found out from my boss. (My boss) sent me an email saying, is this our Frank?" Rehorst said. "I looked it up and looked up the pictures, and that was definitely him."

She said the news shocked her. She said James was an average and normal tenant. She said he was polite and easy going. She never dealt with any complaints.

"With everything that I do, I meet so many different types of people, and if I made a list of the thousands of tenants we had, he wouldn't be at the top of the list of doing anything like this ever," Rehorst said.

She said James never explained why he was moving or why he was living specifically in Milwaukee.

James' sister told the New York Times her brother moved cities often and that she didn't keep in close contact with him.

Court records indicate James was born in New York. Police are still trying to figure out a motive.

Phantom Fireworks said a man named Frank James bought fireworks in Caledonia back in June of 2021.

The company said four of the items James purchased are believed to be the same items that were shown in a photograph published by NBC. NBC's photo shows a bag that was identified as having been left behind by the Brooklyn subway shooter.

Phantom Fireworks said because they have no video of the purchase, they can't confirm that this James Frank is the same as the one possibly involved in the Brooklyn shooting.

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