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The New York Police Department has identified the man they say stabbed two employees at the Museum of Modern Art Saturday.
The man, 60-year-old Gary Cabana, had gone into the museum to see a film but was denied entry due to his membership having been revoked because of previous incidents, the NYPD told FOX 5 New York at a news conference.
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Newly released video shows Cabana allegedly hop over the counter and attack the two employees, identified as a man and woman both 24 years old. The victims were in stable condition at Bellevue Hospital later Saturday.
People posted on social media that museum goers ran for the exits in confusion and chaos after the stabbing.
John Miller, NYPD deputy commissioner of intelligence and counterterrorism, said the man’s membership had been revoked for two separate incidents of disorderly behavior at the museum in recent days.
A letter informing the suspect of his expired membership had been sent out Friday, but he came to the museum Saturday saying he intended to see a film there, Miller said.
The museum didn’t immediately respond to an emailed request for comment on the incident, but said on social media that it would be closed to the public Sunday.
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The midtown Manhattan museum evacuated its patrons Saturday afternoon. Yuichi Shimada, a museum-goer present at the time of the attack, tweeted he was on the second floor when a couple suddenly came running toward him, and he heard security guards’ radios throughout the museum loudly announcing something at the same time.
“It was chaotic, partly because it was snowing, with a group of young women in a panic and crying,” Shimada said. “Not being good with claustrophobia myself, I headed for the exit early.”
Shimada was diverted to the side on his way out as a stretcher was hurriedly brought in. Police vehicles and ambulances, emergency lights flashing, thronged outside the museum as dozens of patrons hurried away.
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Mayor Eric Adams tweeted Saturday evening he’d been briefed on the attack and said the victims’ injuries were not life-threatening.
“We’re grateful for the quick work of our first responders,” Adams, a former New York City police captain, said.
MoMA, founded in 1929, is one of New York City’s top tourist attractions and drew more than 700,000 visitors in 2020. Its collection of modern art includes “The Starry Night” by Vincent Van Gogh and works by Henri Matisse and Paul Gauguin.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.