The suspect in the Brooklyn subway shooting appeared Thursday in federal court for his initial appearance, during which he pleaded neither guilty nor not guilty and was determined to be held without bond.
Frank James has been charged in federal court in Brooklyn with violating a law that prohibits terrorist attacks and other violent attacks on a mass transportation system. Federal defenders assigned to James consented to his remand, but reserved the right to change their position later.
Defense attorneys also requested a psychiatric evaluation for their client but only for medical purposes. This is not to assess mental competency but to assess any potential medical need. The defenders also made a special request for magnesium pills for the suspect’s leg cramps. The suspect wore a khaki prison uniform and a blue surgical mask during his appearance in federal court.
James spoke up once, when asked if he had seen the complaint, only to admit that he had.
The prosecutor told the investigating judge that the suspect “disrupted the transportation system in a way not seen in this city in 20 years.”
“In this case, the suspect opened fire in a terrifying manner on passengers in a crowded subway,” prosecutor Sara Winick said. She went on to describe the attack as “premeditated and carefully planned” and that it “caused terror”.