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9th suspect nabbed in attack on NYPD cops at Times Square migrant shelter

Two NYPD officers and a lieutenant from the NYPD’s Midtown South Precinct approached a group of men outside a migrant shelter on W. 42nd St. near Seventh Ave. on Jan. 27, 2024, in New York. The officers were trying to break up the disorderly crowd and when they attempted to put one of the men under arrest, multiple people attacked the officers. (NYPD/TNS)

A ninth suspect has been nabbed for the caught-on-video January attack on two NYPD cops outside a Times Square migrant shelter, police said Tuesday.

Edgarlis Vegas, 20, was arrested Monday morning for the Jan. 27 attack outside the W. 47th St. shelter that sparked outrage citywide.

Vegas is charged with assaulting a police officer and obstructing government administration but her exact role in the attack was not immediately clear.

Her arraignment in Manhattan Criminal Court was pending Tuesday.

The attack on the two officers was caught on viral video that has intensified the debate about migrants in the city and the country.

So far, eight other suspects have been indicted and numerous others are being sought.

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg was criticized after the first four suspects taken into custody who were initially released without bail. They were later indicted.

Bragg has pushed back on the criticism, noting the difficulty of prosecuting a case in which some of the suspects changed their clothes after the assault, making it more difficult to determine from video who did what.

After Bragg announced the indictments of several of the suspects, he released police body-worn camera footage that seemed to contradict the NYPD contention that the small group of suspects were blocking pedestrian traffic when officers first approached.

Pedestrians could be seen on video walking freely past the men. The video shows most of the group immediately complying, singing in unison as they walk away. But one suspect, Yohenry Brito, 24, lags behind and ignores the officers while looking at his phone, then gets confrontational with a cop who tries to nudge him along.

As Brito walks away, he stops to retrieve a baby stroller on the sidewalk. Body-cam footage shows him pushing the stroller and starting to walk away from the cops again before quipping in Spanish that one of the officers looked like the fictional TV character “Ugly Betty.” NYPD Lt. Ben Kurian then grabbed him by the scruff of the neck and threw him up against a wall.

In the footage captured by the lieutenant’s bodycam, Brito repeatedly asks what is happening in Spanish. The situation quickly escalates as Brito tries to escape Kurian’s grasp, with both tumbling to the ground in seconds.

Officer Zunxu Tian then intervened and several of the men with Brito descend on the two cops and repeatedly grab and kick them as they grapple with Brito on the ground, various pieces of footage show.

The cops were treated for bumps and bruises.


© 2024 New York Daily News

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