Guyanese Roots Man Accused In Hanukkah Machete Attack Indicted

Guyanese roots Grafton Thomas, 37 years old from Greenwood Lake, is seen inside a room at the Ramapo Town Hall in Airmont, New York after being arrested on December 29, 2019. (Photo by KENA BETANCUR/AFP via Getty Images)
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News Americas, NEW YORK, NY., Sat. Jan. 3, 2020: Grafton Thomas, the Brooklyn, NY-born, Guyanese roots man accused of using a machete to stab five Orthodox Jews at a rabbi’s Hanukkah party in Monsey, New York, has been indicted by a Grand Jury in Rockland County.

Thomas, who was born to Guyana-born immigrant mother, Kim Thomas, now faces six counts of attempted second-degree murder, three counts of first-degree assault, three counts of attempted first-degree assault and two counts of first-degree burglary. All are classified as violent felonies, Rockland County District Attorney Thomas E. Walsh II announced.

Thomas, 37, was born in the Jewish neighborhood in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, NY. His lawyer Michael Sussman, says Thomas has a long-standing history of mental illness, including diagnoses of paranoid schizophrenia with warning signs that have been ignored by authorities for years.

At 9:52 p.m. on Dec. 28, 2019, Thomas allegedly tried to kill Hanukkah celebrants in the basement of 47 Forshay Road, prosecutors said, slashing at least six people. He fled after someone threw a coffee table at him and he was tracked to New York City, where he was arrested that night.

Meanwhile, a federal grand jury was convened Friday in Manhattan to also consider the case.