Manhattan Slasher Nabbed by Cops

Four-day spree left 2 dead, 3 injured

| 30 Dec 2022 | 02:23

A vicious Manhattan slasher allegedly responsible for two knife murders and another pub attack in which three people were injured has been nabbed by police while driving a stolen car in the South Bronx.

The slashing rampage began Dec. 19 outside Spikes Pub on Ave. A near East 13th Street and ended with his arrest on 166th St. and Jerome Ave. on Dec. 24. In between, police said 35 year old Roland Codrington had attacked three people at Teddy’s Bar on upper Second Ave. on Dec. 22 and a few hours later after going for a walk in Marcus Garvey Park in Harlem around 2:30 a.m., encountered pediatrician Bruce Maurice Henry and stabbed him to death.

“The arrest happened after a department wide coordination of intelligence, resources and skill,” said Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell in the December 26 press conference announcing the arrest and the end of the one man crime spree.

“While we applaud the great work of our officers, our hearts go out to the family and friends and loved ones of the victims who fell prey to this predator,” said Sewell.

Codrington of 2185 Second Ave. Manhattan was charged with two counts of murder in the homicides and two counts of attempted murder in a pub attack at Teddy’s Bar on Second Ave. and an assault with a baseball bat. Two days later, police stopped him while he and his girlfriend were driving a stolen black Mercedes Benz [UPDATE: The DAs charging document said that the stolen car was “dark blue”] that belonged to Dr. Henry, who was last seen alive leaving his Spuyten Duyvil home in the Bronx on the evening of Dec. 22.

“Let them go. I’m the one you’re looking for,” Codrington is said to have told the cops when first busted with his girlfriend and two others in the stolen car, according to the Manhattan DAs office.

After being questioned as to why he was inside Dr. Henry’s car the day after the doctor’s murder, the DA said Codrington told cops, “I am in a dead man’s car, what do you think it means?”

”Comment to me that caused me to snap”

According to the DA, he told cops on Christmas morning after a long night of questioning, “I walked to the park and a guy made a comment to me that caused me to snap.”

He said, “My friend had to stop me.” But cops said not before he had issued a vicious knife stabbing that left the victim for dead with at least 18 stab wounds to his torso, face, neck and back. Police at a press conference on Dec. 26 had declined to speculate why Dr. Henry was inside the park at 2:30 am, the approximate time of the murder. An unidentified male flagged down a cop around 2:40 am and told him there was a dead body on a path a short distance into the park.

Baseball Bat Assault

After his altercation and knife attack at Teddy’s on Dec. 22, Codrington was quickly linked to the still unsolved murder of 51-year-old James Cunningham in the East Village on Dec. 19 thanks to matching his description on video surveillance. Police said his name was known because he had been kicked out of Teddy’s Bar about a week earlier and had come back with a pit bull and carrying a baseball bat. Then he went behind the bar and used the bat in an attempt to strangle the female bartender. When male patrons came to her aid, he took out a large knife and stabbed them but the wounds this time were not life threatening.

The alleged assailant apparently went for a walk in Marcus Garvey Park a short distance away from the upper Second Ave. pub.

Separately, police said after they discovered Dr. Henry’s body, they began reviewing surveillance video and had seen a man and woman jump into the front seat of the dark color Mercedes belonging to Dr. Henry. After a massive police manhunt that included detectives, helicopters, transit officers and patrolmen, police spotted the stolen car on a Harlem street on Christmas Eve. He was arrested minutes later after he drove over the bridge into the south Bronx.

“Three sharp-eyed officers with the 30th Pct made the apprehension,” said NYPD chief of patrol John Chell at a press conference announcing the arrest.

“We don’t know he was involved in the homicide in the park until we stopped him in the car,” said Chell. Police subsequently learned that Codrington’s girlfriend who was with him in the car was also present at two homicides and is being questioned, police said, but has not been charged. Police did not release her name.

From the initial arrest, cops soon linked him to the knife attack at Teddy’s on the upper East Side and the East Village slashing death earlier.

In the Dec. 19 attack, police said the victim had stopped for a drink inside Spikes, (formerly known as The HorseBox) on Avenue A between 13th and 14th, chatted with a few patrons after consuming a non alcoholic seltzer and stepped outside around 1 a.m.

Visible Blood Stains

Police said video surveillance showed the alleged assailant in the encounter with Cunningham quickly turned fatal. “There’s no prior interactions,” said NYPD chief of detectives James Essig at the press conference. “They have a 20 second caught on camera dispute.” Blood stains were still visible on the street outside 214 Ave. A, where Cunningham died.

A bartender at Spike’s told Straus News the victim drank only a seltzer that night and lived nearby on 13th St., suggesting he was probably less than a block away from his home when the savage attack occurred.

Police said they are looking to see if there are other slashing attacks in Manhattan where Codrington – who has a long rap sheet with over 20 prior arrests and several stints in prison – may have been involved.

According to cops, Codrington confessed to all three incidents in his one man crime spree. “I used the same knife [to stab Dr. Henry] that I used in the other two incidents,” the DAs office said Codrington told cops, adding, “I got rid of the knife in the Hudson River.”

Cops said they are looking at other unsolved stabbing incidents. “We’re looking at all unprovoked stabbings throughout the city to see if he was involved in any others,” said Essig.

“It was just a great plan on Christmas Eve,” said Chell of the initial plan to close in on the stolen Mercedes. “When everyone else was out shopping, we were still working. Thank God we put this to bed.”

“I’m in a dead man’s car. What do you think it means?” – suspect Roland Codrington