How Cops Caught the Man Who Allegedly Attacked People Celebrating Hanukkah in New York
A man identified by authorities as Grafton Thomas, 37, was caught on surveillance footage charging into Rabbi Chaim Rottenburg’s home in Monsey, a suburban hamlet in Rockland County Saturday.
The man accused of bursting into a Hasidic rabbi’s New York home and stabbing five Jewish people at a Hanukah celebration was apprehended after police used advanced technology to track the suspect as he made his way to the city, officials said.
A man identified by authorities as Grafton Thomas, 37, was caught on surveillance footage charging into Rabbi Chaim Rottenburg’s home in Monsey, a suburban hamlet in Rockland County Saturday. He allegedly used a machete to attack five people, all of whom are Hasidic.
“He didn't say a word,” Joseph Gluck said. “He just hit people right and left.”
Gluck was at the home and fought back with a marble-topped table.
“I hit him in his face and I started to run toward the door,” he said.
The suspect fled the scene, but not before Gluck was able to get his license plate.
That plate number was picked up by a high-tech police license plate reader as the attacker drove 30 miles, including across the George Washington Bridge into New York City.
“Every time a vehicle goes by, it takes a picture, records the information … and it runs it through a data base to see if it's a wanted vehicle,” Police Officer Chris Franco told Inside Edition.
When a suspect vehicle passes an alarm sounds.
“They can read 1,800 plates a minute, so they're very accurate once it's entered into the system and flagged—it’s only a matter of time,” security expert Steve Kardian said.
More license plate readers spotted the suspect's car in the Bronx and in upper Manhattan, where Thomas was seen on surveillance footage walking into a bodega.
Video showed Thomas calmly walking the aisles in the store before returning to his car, where he was surrounded by armed police. Police said Thomas was covered in blood and smelled of bleach they alleged he used to try to clean up.
Federal prosecutors on Monday filed hate crimes charges against Thomas, who on Sunday pleaded not guilty to five counts of attempted murder and one count of first-degree burglary.
Trending on Inside Edition
Bernie Madoff, Fraudster Convicted of Largest-Ever Ponzi Scheme, Dies in Prison at 82News
The Killing of Daunte Wright: Officer Kim Potter Will Be Charged in Fatal Shooting of Minneapolis 20-Year-OldNews
Undercover Black Cop Beaten 'Like Rodney King' Shines Light on St. Louis Police Force Long Accused of RacismNews
Steven Avery's Attorney Says New Witness Saw His Nephew "Suspiciously Pushing" Car of Teresa HalbachCrime
‘Bachelor’ Colton Underwood Comes Out as Gay in ‘Good Morning America’ InterviewEntertainment
Lizzie Borden House’s New Owner Says He Heard Footsteps in Famous Haunted HomeOffbeat
Mom Arrested After Police Chase for Stabbing 3 Kids to Death Following Alleged Custody Dispute, Officials SayCrime
TikTok Helps Find Owners of Long Lost GoPro That Captured Couple's Sweet Vacation MemoriesInspirational