A White supremacist pleaded guilty on Wednesday to killing a Black man with a sword, an attack that law enforcement officials said was meant to start a race war in the U.S., writes the Associated Press.
James Jackson, 30, stabbed Timothy Caughman, who was Black, from behind on March 20, 2017, in New York City while collecting bottles for recycling.
Jackson, who is White and from Baltimore, said he committed the killing in New York City because it’s the media capital of the world and that he used it as “practice run” for future attacks on Black people.
He also said that he would have preferred to have killed “a young thug” or “a successful older Black man with blondes…people you see in Midtown. These younger guys that put White girls on the wrong path.”
Jackson pleaded guilty to six counts, including murder and hate crime charges, and will be sentenced on Feb. 13. Jackson faces life in prison.
“This was more than a murder case,” Cyrus Vance, Manhattan’s district attorney, said outside the courtroom. “This was a type of cruelty that needs to be treated with the most serious of our laws.”
Vance said Jackson’s plea was a landmark conviction because it was the state’s first prosecution under its “murder as a crime of terrorism” statute.
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Teddy is a multimedia journalist who serves as the culture and political writer for EBONY. His work has appeared in NBC's Owned and Operated stations, as well as DNAInfo, which covered local neighborhood news in New York City. He received his Masters in Journalism from the Craig Newmark School of Journalism at CUNY in 2017.