New Jersey Man Allegedly Attacks 6 People with Tree Branch and Steals 2 Cars in Manhattan
Bryan Thompson, 43, has been charged with "multiple counts of robbery, assault and criminal mischief," the New York Police Department tells PEOPLE
A New Jersey man has been arrested after allegedly assaulting several people across Manhattan with a "wooden weapon" that has been identified as a tree branch.
Bryan Thompson, 43, was charged with "multiple counts of robbery, assault and criminal mischief," the New York Police Department tells PEOPLE.
The chaotic incident took place on Saturday evening, police say, beginning when Thompson allegedly attacked three people at the Canal Street subway station around 6:30 p.m.
Thompson allegedly struck a 56-year-old male, an 18-year-old male and a 39-year-old female over the head in an "unprovoked attack" while they were waiting on a northbound platform. All three had lacerations from the attack to the point of bleeding, police say, and were taken to a nearby hospital.
Thompson then allegedly left the subway station and attacked a 39-year-old female near Varick and Canal Street with the same weapon, which ABC News has identified as a tree branch. The woman also bled from her injuries, according to police.
Thompson kept going, allegedly next approaching a 37-year-old man who was sitting in a parked car. The man exited his vehicle upon Thompson's approach, but left it running. Thompson allegedly got in the driver's seat, speeding to Laight Street and 6th Avenue, where the car crashed into two parked cars, police say.
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He allegedly then got out of the car and broke the back window of a 2006 Ford Taurus, trying unsuccessfully to take it over from its female driver.
Police say Thompson then kept going on foot until he approached a 2020 Jeep Grand Cherokee that was being driven by a 32-year-old female. Thompson allegedly broke the Jeep's side window, and was again unsuccessful at gaining entry.
He then approached two pedestrians, a 42-year-old man and a 41-year-old woman, and allegedly attacked them both with the tree branch, police say. The man's arm was broken in the assault, and the woman was left with lacerations and bruising on her leg.
Thompson then allegedly approached another vehicle, a 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee on West Broadway. He "began to strike the vehicle causing the victim to exit the vehicle on foot fearing for his safety," police tell PEOPLE and again got in the driver's seat and sped off.
Shortly after 7 p.m., police spotted the car on West 24th Street and 12th Avenue, where Thompson allegedly lost control of the car, rammed into an NYPD radio vehicle and hit a median. Thompson allegedly refused to get out of the stolen car, and officers "were forced to break the driver side window and eventually Taser the individual after he refused multiple lawful orders to comply."
ABC News reported that Thompson was taken to a hospital for a psychiatric evaluation. It is not immediately clear if Thompson has obtained legal representation or has entered a plea at this time.