A day after being arrested for fatally stabbing a man in midtown Manhattan last year, James Jackson allegedly admitted he killed the black victim for "practice," because he wanted to kill even more black people in Times Square.
Just before midnight on March 20th, 2017, Timothy Caughman, 66, staggered into the Midtown South Precinct with stab wounds, the result of an unprovoked attack near West 36th Street and 9th Avenue. He died of his wounds at Bellevue an hour later. The next day, Jackson, 29 at the time, turned himself into police in Times Square, allegedly saying, "You need to arrest me. I have the knife in my coat."
Jackson allegedly selected Caughman as his victim because he was black. During a pre-trial hearing on Thursday, prosecutors, who had charged him with murder as an act of terrorism, played his interview with police.
According to the NY Times, Jackson said "he stabbed Timothy Caughman repeatedly with a 'Roman short sword' that he drew from a scabbard tucked into his pants. He said his ultimate goal was to murder several black men — preferably younger black men in the company of white women — because of his hatred of interracial dating. 'That’s the main crux for me' said Mr. Jackson, now 30, saying that mixed-race couples were 'an insurmountable problem' for him..."
“I was going for something a bit bigger,” Mr. Jackson told his interrogators, explaining that over the course of several days in New York, with a hotel in Times Square as his base, he walked around Manhattan actively stalking between 10 and 15 individuals or groups with the thought of killing them. He said he almost carried out other attacks, using two knives hidden in his pockets, but hesitated.
“It’s more complicated than you think,” he said.
He said he felt “kind of bad” that his victim was an older man — but only because he wanted to kill somebody younger. When Detective Barbara asked him if he felt any remorse, Mr. Jackson said, “No,” adding, “He’s a homeless black guy.”
Mr. Jackson said his next step was to move on to a larger attack in a city that he called the center of the media universe. “I wanted to basically influence the national conversation,” he said.
He also told police that he was going to email the NY Times or CNN about his motives after an attack.
When announcing the upgraded charges against Jackson last year, Manhattan D.A. Cy Vance said, "James Jackson prowled the streets of New York for three days in search of a black person to assassinate in order to launch a campaign of terrorism against our Manhattan community and the values we celebrate. Last week, with total presence of mind, he acted on his plan, randomly selecting a beloved New Yorker solely on the basis of his skin color, and stabbing him repeatedly and publicly on a Midtown street corner."