NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A suspect was indicted Tuesday on accusations that he stabbed five people – including a toddler – in Riverside Park South earlier this month.
Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. announced Tuesday that Julius Graham, 43, was indicted in Manhattan Supreme Court with five counts each of first- and second-degree attempted murder, among other related charges.
“Julius Graham is accused of embarking on a stabbing rampage on a peaceful autumn morning when hundreds of New Yorkers were out enjoying a public park,” Vance said in a news release. “He not only injured five people, including an 18-month-old child, but destroyed the sense of safety and respite that all New Yorkers have a right to feel in their city parks. Thanks to a heroic good Samaritan and the police officers who responded, more innocent bystanders were not hurt.”
Graham was arrested on Oct. 1 following the stabbing incident around 8 p.m. in Riverside Park South near West 64th Street.
Police said Jessica Lipps, 32, was attacked. James Fayette, 34, was slashed, and his 18-month-old son, Luke, also had his left arm slashed. Ben Loehnen, 35, was stabbed in the abdomen, and Deanna Kostel, 36, was stabbed in the back while jogging.
Thomas Ciriacks, 49, was walking his two dogs when he witnessed Graham’s alleged rampage, and brought him to the ground. He said he witnessed the suspect attacking a woman.
Ciriacks says he ran to pass off the dogs’ leashes to someone else. Then, he and the biker distracted the man.
“He was lurching, like very zombie-esque, you know? Something wasn’t right about him. His eyes were clearly crazy,” Ciriacks said. “He let go of the woman, she ran, and he started coming towards for me.”
He said at that point, his dogs got frantic and the man moved away. But it wasn’t over – the suspect then attacked victim Fayette and his 2-year-old son.
Ciriacks said he then held the man down to prevent further attacks.
Suspect Graham is homeless, and police said he appeared to be emotionally disturbed.
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