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New Year’s Eve machete attack: The 19-year-old accused wanted to carry out a jihadist attack

A 19-year-old radicalized American who attacked police with a machete on New Year’s Eve in New York and wanted to carry out a jihadist attack, a judicial source said, was arrested on Wednesday after charges were brought against him.

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The young man, Trevor Pickford, is accused of attacking three officers Saturday night near Times Square, where New Yorkers and tourists from around the world congregate in their thousands on New Year’s Eve.

According to the police complaint, he was struck several blows and inflicted injuries to the head and shoulders by the policemen, without endangering their lives, before immobilizing him.

“I wanted to kill a uniformed officer (…) I shouted Allahu Akbar,” he declared “in essence” during the first interrogation, referring to this legal document published on Wednesday.

The young man, originally from the state of Maine in the northeastern United States, had shown signs of Islamic extremism before the events, and according to sources reported by the media, he carried a diary in which he expressed his desire to join the ranks. of the Afghan Taliban and die a martyr.

Federal police had questioned him in mid-December after a close friend tipped them off about jihadist remarks and were monitoring his online activities, agents told NBC on condition of anonymity.

Prosecutor Lucy Nicholas confirmed during a hearing before the New York State Court in Manhattan: “He explained that at first he wanted to go abroad, but then decided to come to New York first to kill and fight.”

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An order was issued for his detention immediately thereafter.