A man wielding machetes wounded three New York Police Department officers close to Times Square during New Year's Eve celebrations on Saturday night. The officers targeted included a rookie officer on his first day.
The incident occurred at about 9:30 pm as crowds were gathered to celebrate the new year. The report from The New York Post:
The officer who graduated on Friday was assigned the Staten Island precinct but was in for the new year's eve special for the night was assigned to West 52nd Street and 8th Avenue when the machete-wielding man confronted him and two officers about 9:00 p.m., NYPD sources said to The Post.
The rookie cop was hit in the head, which prompted another cop to shoot at the suspect. The officer who was identified by the mayor as Eric Adams as Paul, was slashed in the head, prompting another officer to shoot the suspect, hitting his shoulder, sources claimed. Paul suffered a severe skull fracture and laceration, Sewell told reporters.
Another copwas struck on the head by the weapon and sustained an injury to the head.
The NYPD posted a photo of the weapon on Twitter.
The suspect was identified as 19 year-old Trevor Bickford and reportedly is under investigation for possible connections in Islamic extremism. As reported by The Post:
Law enforcement officers have told The Post that cops are checking whether he's the latest radicalized Islamic extremist in light of online posts.
Bickford, who is currently in the hospital, does not appear to have a criminal history. According the The Post:
Sources from the police said that the FBI located in Boston have an active investigation on him, and he's listed as an official list of guardians due to his radicalization. The aunt of Bickford notified authorities after the man was reported to have made statements to her that suggested he wanted to fight in Afghanistan, Police sources told reporters.
As per WMTW, Bickford, who is a resident of Maine, traveled from Maine to New York on the 19th of December, via Amtrak.
The third officer was reportedly injured after he was hit by a police vehicle when attempting to move barricades in order to give police officers to access the scene
“They were able to move the barricades very quickly. Police officers were near the barricade and moved it to allow police cars to move swiftly -then the barricade collapsed and was struck by the vehicle. He was hit twice,” witness Kim Novack reported to The Post.
Fortunately, none of the officers' injuries are considered to be life-threatening. All of them are in good health.
Following the incident, New York Mayor Eric Adams has praised the NYPD:
Mayor Eric Adams praised the level of education officers receive to handle incidents like this. The three officers were able to keep the scene and brought the situation under control.
“I think it's a real reflection of how well our police officers are trained and the level of courage they bring to this occupation,” he added.