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A Nassau County police officer fatally shot a baseball bat-wielding suspect who went on a vicious crime-spree in two boroughs in New York City on Monday morning.
The violence began at 4:00AM when the suspect viciously attacked a Chassidish man on Kent and Division Avenues in Williamsburg and stole his cellphone. The victim sustained serious injuries, and was taken to Bellvue Hospital by Hatzalah where he underwent facial surgery.
Shomrim units who had responded to the scene and assisted the victim, told YWN they noticed an SUV speeding through the neighborhood. At around 4:20AM the vehicle, reportedly driven by the suspect and with North Carolina plates, struck and killed a 50-year-old man at the intersection of Grand and Metropolitan Avenues in East Williamburg. The suspect then fled the scene.
Just 10 minutes later, a woman delivering newspapers had her Honda Odyssey stolen at Madison and Montgomery Streets in Manhattan. A few minutes after that, at West Street and Harrison Street, a man was punched in the face and had his 2018 Acura stolen. The hijacked Odyssey was left at the scene. CBS2 reported the suspect was involved in all of those incidents.
The brutal rampage came to an end at around 10:30AM in Great Neck with the suspect being shot by police.
Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder said the suspect was stopped at a stop sign at Maple Street and East Shore Road in Great Neck, when the drivers of two vans behind him began honking their horns for him to move. Instead, police say he got out of his vehicle with a bat and smashed the windows of the first van behind him.
The driver exited the vehicle and was hit in the head with the bat, police said. Seconds later, the suspect reportedly walked toward the second van and smashed those windows. The driver of the second van didn’t get out and was not hurt.
Police say a Nassau County officer on routine patrol saw what was happening and approached the suspect, who allegedly went after him with the bat. Authorities say the officer attempted to Tase the suspect, but was unsuccessful.
He repeatedly told the suspect to drop the bat, authorities said, but the man refused to comply. A good Samaritan who tried to intervene was also hit with the bat, and that’s when the officer fired two shots.
The man was struck in the chest and pronounced dead at the hospital.
The officer was taken to hospital for trauma but was otherwise uninjured. The driver of the van and the good Samaritan were hospitalized for their injuries.
The suspect has been identified Michael Ward. Besides for his crimes on Monday, CBS2 reports he was connected to assault and robbery of a 77-year-old man on Saturday night in the Bronx. The suspect also has links to the state of Virginia, where he has been charged in at least 13 prior assaults and robberies.
(Nat Golden – YWN)