A 21-year-old Brooklyn man was brought into custody on Sunday in connection with a string of stabbings in New York City’s subway system that left two dead and two more injured inside a 14-hour window. 

The arrest came after the New York Police Department dispatched an extra 500 officers on Saturday to patrol streets and the subway system in response to the series of seemingly unmotivated assaults that occurred along the A train line. 

The police union also used the city’s requests for increased police presence to take a swipe at the City Council, which is asking for a criminal justice reform package directed at defunding and disempowering the police in New York. 

Twenty-one-year-old Rigoberto Lopez of Butler Street in Brooklyn was taken into custody and charged with two counts of murder and two counts of attempted murder in relation to the knife attacks along the A line, an NYPD spokesperson told Fox News. 

The person of interest, reports say, was arrested at West 186th Street and Audubon Avenue in the Washington Heights section of Manhattan on Saturday night after being brought in for questioning, according to the New York Daily News

The initial assault occurred on Friday right before 12am, when a male victim was pronounced dead after receiving stab wounds on the neck and body on the A train. Almost two hours later an unresponsive woman, 45, with several knife injuries was taken to a local medical facility where she was also pronounced dead by medical personnel. 

Authorities said that both victims were suspected of being homeless and were found on the contrasting ends of the A train line, covered in blood and beneath a seat on the subway. 

A 67-year-old male victim and a 43-year-old also were survivors of what appeared to be stabbings on the A train within a 24-hour period, but officials say those two remain in stable condition.

The police union representing NYPD detectives had some words for the Democrat-run City Council for pushing a plan to reduce the department’s presence only one day before the additional 500 officers were requested to increase patrols on the subway system.

“Perhaps Council Speaker Johnson should ask NYers if they want more or less police on the streets & in the subways – especially since the tragic murders on the A Line,” Detectives’ Endowment Association tweeted on Saturday. “There’s no doubt they want to see more police. It’s time for the politicians to wake up!”

The police union then shared a story from the local news noting that on Thursday City Council Speaker Corey Johnson lobbied for a new 11-bill criminal-justice package that intends on ending qualified immunity for officers. 

“These are big bills. It would change the footprint of policing in New York City,” Johnson told NY1 in an interview. “It builds on many of the calls for reform that happened last year after the murder of George Floyd.”

Reforms in the package will also involve: asking the state to take away the police commissioner’s exclusive authority over police discipline and send it to an independent body; granting the City Council greater authority over future police commissioners’ decisions and requiring the mayor to ask for Council approval before appointing a police commissioner; investigating police officers with a supposed record of bias; stipulating the NYPD must turn in a quarterly report on all traffic stops; building a non-police emergency response unit for mental-health calls; overhauling the function of school safety officers; mandating reports on the turnover rate of school safety; and moving crash investigations to the city transportation department, according to NY1.


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