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New York City police insist that malfunctioning cameras did not delay their manhunt for suspect Frank R. James after the subway shooting on Tuesday.
James, 62, stands accused of injuring 29 people, including 10 who suffered gunshot wounds. At the time of the attack, the camera that could have captured the attack malfunctioned.
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But the NYPD claimed that the malfunction in no way impaired the department’s ability to conduct a manhunt for James, who was arrested Wednesday in Manhattan’s East Village.
“At the time of the attack on Tuesday in Brooklyn, the cameras were out at three stations due to a technical issue,” John Miller, Deputy Commissioner for Intelligence and Counterterrorism with the NYPD, wrote in a statement published Thursday. “Statements that the lack of cameras on the station delayed the manhunt by many hours are unfair and misleading.”
The NYPD said that it relied on “witness descriptions of the suspect” and the “distinctive, bright colored clothing he wore during the attack.”
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“As for his face, during the attack and the escape he wore a large black mask obscuring most of his face,” Miller added.
Officers described how they used the rental truck key – a “piece of identification” found at the scene of the attack – to track down video of the suspect from the Pennsylvania rental location as well as James’s photo and name from motor vehicle records.
The MTA supplies live feeds from 5,100 cameras and an additional 5,000 cameras that record activity throughout the NYC subway system daily. The NYPD stressed that malfunctions occur from time to time, and they work with the MTA to identify and report such issues so that the cameras can be repaired.
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“The MTA cameras in other parts of the system were essential elements in determining his movements before and after the shootings,” Miller said. “Their personnel worked with us around the clock to identify and retrieve images in this case.”
The MTA did not respond to a Fox News request for comment.
Fox News’ Stephanie Pagones contributed to this report.