A suspect has been arrested in connection to a spate of subway stabbings in New York City over the weekend that left two people dead, CNN reports. Rigoberto Lopez, a 21-year-old Brooklyn man, was taken into custody on Saturday night and charged Sunday with murder and attempted murder related to the four attacks, per the Washington Post. Citing “law enforcement sources,” the New York Post reports that Lopez has confessed to the attacks. Dubbed the “Subway Slasher” by the NYPD, Lopez was in possession of a large knife at the time of his arrest, the department said in a tweet. Authorities believe all of the victims were homeless, according to reports. The attacks occurred on the A subway line, per ABC. A victim was found dead on a train in Queens late Friday with stab wounds to his neck and torso. A 44-year-old woman was found stabbed to death in a subway car in Manhattan two hours later. The two non-fatal attacks, which involved a 67-year-old man and a 43-year-old man, also reportedly took place in Manhattan.
“I’m not going to get into motive, but what I can tell you is they were all unprovoked attacks. The victims had nothing, didn’t initiate anything,” The NYPD’s Brian McGee said during a Sunday briefing, the New York Post reports. Lopez is homeless and has at least four prior arrests, McGhee said, including assaulting a police officer and drug-related charges. NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea said Saturday that the department would deploy 500 additional officers to patrol the city’s transit system. “We want to do everything we can to make sure it remains the safest system, and that people also feel safe,” he said. In a joint statement, the heads of the transit system and the transit workers union called the attacks “outrageous and unacceptable,” per ABC. “We have been calling on the city to add more police to the system, and to do more to assist those who desperately need mental health assistance,” they said. “The time for action is now.” (Read more crime stories.)