Thursday, February 17, 2011

Four killed as graffiti artist goes on rampage with knives in New York

A GRAFFITI artist armed with five knives went on a 28-hour rampage across New York city, fatally stabbing his stepfather, ex-girlfriend and her mother, killing a pedestrian and wounding four other people before being arrested in Times Square.
Maksim Gelman, 23, was armed with a bloodied kitchen knife when he was taken into custody on Saturday morning after an all-night hunt from Brooklyn into Manhattan.

"It's so horrendous and bizarre. We have no reason to know why he did this," said police commissioner Raymond Kelly, who held up a photo of the knife that he said Gelman had used to slash a subway passenger on the head and neck. The man survived.

Mr Kelly said charges were pending against Gelman.

The stabbing spree started just after 5am on Friday, when police say Gelman fatally knifed his stepfather, Aleksandr Kuznetsov, 54, at their apartment in Brooklyn's Sheepshead Bay neighbourhood. Gelman had argued with his mother after she refused to allow him to use her car, and Mr Kuznetsov intervened and was attacked, Mr Kelly said.

Police found Mr Kuznetsov's body at his home in the predominantly eastern European immigrant neighbourhood. Ukrainian-born Gelman and his mother became naturalised US citizens about seven years ago.

At about 10:30am, several blocks away, Gelman entered the home of his ex-girlfriend and used a kitchen knife to fatally stab her mother, Anna Bulchenko, 56. When Yelena Bulchenko, 20, arrived home at about 4pm, she found her mother dead and called the police.

Gelman, who was still in the house, chased Ms Bulchenko as she fled outside and stabbed her 11 times. He then fled by car to Brooklyn's Midwood neighbourhood, hitting another vehicle. The driver confronted Gelman and was stabbed three times in the chest, but survived.

Gelman drove off, hitting pedestrian Stephen Tanenbaum, 62, who later died. Gelman later abandoned the car in the driveway of a house in Midwood, not far from a freight rail line which Gelman frequented as a graffiti artist, according to Mr Kelly.

Gelman was not seen again until just before 1am on Saturday, when he confronted a cab driver in the Crown Heights area and stabbed him. Shortly after, he approached a couple in a Nissan, stabbing the man multiple times in the hand before hijacking the car. Both men survived.

Just after 8am on Saturday, passengers on a southbound train in upper Manhattan noticed that a man on the train matched photos of Gelman they had seen in newspapers. One passenger on the train got off at West 96th Street, approached officers on the platform and told them that a man fitting Gelman's description knocked a newspaper out of her hand, saying: "Do you believe what they're writing about me?"

Gelman jumped off the train at the West 34th Street station, crossed the tracks and hopped on a northbound train, where he stabbed a passenger. Officers were in the driver's compartment of the train after hearing reports that Gelman might be on board. Gelman made his way up to the driver's door and knocked hard on it, claiming that he was the police. One of the officers threw open the door and wrestled Gelman to the ground, knocking the knife from his hand.

He was taken into custody from the train at Times Square.

Mr Kelly described Gelman as an unemployed drug user with ten previous arrests, mostly linked to graffiti and drugs.

Taken from: News Scotsman

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1 comment(s):

Ajlounyinjurylaw said...

Sounds like someone snapped.

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