After a daylong manhunt, police captured triple murder suspect Maksim Gelman on a 3 train yesterday morning. Gelman, accused of stabbing his stepfather to death in their Sheepshead Bay apartment before going to his ex-girlfriend's house and fatally stabbing her and her mother, had climbed from the subway tracks onto a 3 train at 34th Street and confronted passenger Joseph Lozito. Lozito's sister said that Gelman told him, "You are going to die," before slashing him in the back of the head. Luckily, two transit officers were on the train.

Officers Terrance Howell and Tamara Taylor were in the motorman's car, looking for Gelman on the tracks. According to 1010 WINS, "An anonymous caller reported seeing a man who fit Gelman’s description on a southbound No. 1 train between 137th Street and 96th Street in Manhattan. In addition, [Police Commissioner Ray] Kelly said a second witness got off that train and told police that Gelman knocked down a newspaper bearing his photo in her hands and asked 'do you believe what they’re writing about me?'"

The second witness had been on a downtown 1 train; when the train got to 34th Street, the Post reports that Gelman "jumped off, scurried through the tunnel and climbed onto an uptown No. 3 that was slowly leaving the station As soon as he entered, people were scared. 'The way he was walking around, he looked angry. It was very clear something was wrong,' one passenger said. 'He was dirty and kind of aggressive. People moved away as soon as he got on,' said another."

After allegedly stabbing Lozito, Gelman pounded on the motorman's door and yelled, "Police!" Howell tackled Gelman while Taylor grabbed his knife. An off-duty detective, Marcelo Razzo, ran into the train car to help. Kelly said, "He wanted to injure the motorman or take control of the train." The other passengers on the train car fled during the violence; one told the Daily News, "I looked inside and saw a bunch of people running toward me. There was panic. People were running and saying, 'Move! Move! Move!'"

When the train got to Times Square, cops greeted Gelman with their guns drawn. Kelly said that Gelman told them, "She had to die," apparently referring to ex-girlfriend Yelena Bulchenko. Police sources told the Daily News that when questioned about the stabbings, Gelman answered, "Why?! Because I say so!." The source said, "His explanation, if you can call it that, is 'These people have to die, they had to die, that was their destination.'"

Police have been piecing together Gelman's actions from the time he allegedly stabbed stepfather Aleksandr Kuznetsov at least 10 times at 5:10 a.m. on Friday in Brooklyn. (It's suspected that Gelman may have been upset that Kuznetsov wouldn't let him take his mother's Lexus; after the killing, Gelman allegedly fled in the Lexus.) According to the Times:

About 10 a.m., the police said, he entered the apartment of his former girlfriend, Yelena Bulchenko, 20, and her mother, Anna Bulchenko, 56, on East 24th Street, near Avenue Y. The younger woman was not there, but an argument with her mother followed. Mr. Gelman killed the older woman, stabbing her a dozen times, investigators said.

Investigators said he then waited for more than six hours until Yelena Bulchenko arrived home, about 4:15 p.m. He attacked her inside and outside the apartment. She, too, was stabbed to death, the victim of a dozen wounds.


At East 24th Street and Avenue U, police say Gelman got out of the Lexus, possibly because a Pontiac Bonneville was blocking him. At 4:20 p.m., he stabbed the Bonneville's driver, Arthur DiCrescento, in the chest and stole the car, police say. Then, at 4:30 p.m., Gelman then struck a pedestrian, Stephen Tannenbaum, who was crossing the street Avenue R and Ocean Avenue; Tannenbaum later died. The Bonneville was found abandoned at 9:15 p.m. in Midwood.

At 12:50 a.m., Gelman hailed a livery cab at Rochester Avenue and St. John's Place, but then he stabbed the driver in an attempt to take control of the car. When the livery cab hit another car, Gelman apparently got out and tried to carjack Sheldon Pottinger. From the Daily News:

Pottinger and his wife had just finished decorating for a Valentine's Day fund-raiser at the Eternal Life Tabernacle on Eastern Parkway.

The Jamaican immigrant left first, and was waiting inside their black 2001 Nissan Maxima at 12:50 a.m. yesterday.

Chantel Cole, 23, said she watched a man jogging toward her husband - and then heard him snarl, "Motherf-----, get out of the car."

"I started screaming," the mother of three recalled. "I saw his hand going back and forth, like stabbing."

The attacker sped off as a bleeding Pottinger scrambled to escape through the passenger door. After two blocks, he finally popped it open and tumbled to the street.

When Cole arrived with other parishioners, her husband was staggering toward them - and then collapsed.

"I thought he was dead," she said. "I fell to the floor and started crying."

Pottinger's car was found abandoned in Queens, and it's believed Gelman entered the subway there. All told, over the 28 hours since Friday morning, Gelman's alleged actions include at least the three fatal stabbings, fatally striking a pedestrian with a car, and four stabbings (the two carjacking victims, the livery cab driver, and the subway passenger). He has had previous arrests for drugs and graffiti.