Update, Feb. 6, 8:30pm: The police have arrested Derrick Mcleod, a 24-year-old Bed-Stuy resident, and charged him with five counts of assault and four counts of criminal possession of a weapon.
Police say a man wielding a boxcutter attacked four people early this morning in Union Square. The string of assaults started on a 4 train around 1:20am, when the suspect punched a man in the face while gripping the weapon. As the suspect fled from the Union Square station, he slapped a woman in the face and then slashed a man in the face after the man refused to give him $2. The spree continued on 14th Street, where a 59-year-old man was slashed in the face after he declined to give up $1.
Here’s the police department’s description of the attacks, along with a photo of the suspect.
On Wednesday, February 4, 2015 at approximately 0120 hours, a 35-year-old male was approached by the suspects aboard the northbound #4 train at the Broadway and Lafayette station. The two males board the train and the suspect proceeds to walk over to the victim and punch him in the face with the exposed blade of a box cutter in his hand, causing a laceration/puncture wound to the right side of his face. The suspect and victim then stay on the train until Union Square and 14 Street, where they both exit the train. As the suspect is fleeing the station, he comes upon a 20-year-old female in the station and slaps her on the right side of her face causing a physical injury. The suspect then proceeds up the stairs in the vicinity of Food Emporium and encounters a 46-year-old male by the elevator. He asks the male for $2, and when the male refuses, he slashes the right side of his face. The suspect then crosses 14 Street and encounters a 59-year-old male waiting for the M14 bus. The suspect asks this victim for a dollar, and when the male refuses, he is also slashed on the right side of his face. The suspect fled the location. All victims removed to Bellevue Hospital in stable condition. The investigation in ongoing.
The suspect is described as a heavy set male black wearing a white hooded sweatshirt, black vest, blue jeans and red sneakers.
Update, 4:40pm: The police have released additional photos of the suspect, which we’ve placed at the top of the post. NYU’s Public Safety department has issued an alert about the assault, reminding students to take various safety precautions.
Update, 6pm: We’ve replaced the surveillance photos with newly released video of the suspect.