NYPD machete attacker wrote note stating he expected to die
Trevor Bickford landed on law enforcement radar earlier in December after family members reported his radicalization
By Thomas Tracy, Rocco Parascandola, and Larry McShane
New York Daily News
NEW YORK — The machete-wielding jihadist expected to die during his New Year’s Eve attack on two NYPD cops near the annual Times Square ball drop — with the suspect penning a note asking for a traditional Muslim funeral, police sources told the Daily News Tuesday.
Recently radicalized Trevor Bickford, 19, was still awaiting his initial court appearance three days after he was shot in a wild battle with two cops that ended when a third officer shot the suspect in his shoulder, authorities said.
The terror suspect left his sleeping bag and camping equipment in a Queens park before the attack on W. 52nd St. and Eighth Ave., where one officer — in his first day on the job — suffered a fractured skull.
Officials now expect the suspect, who traveled to Manhattan from Maine, will be likely be arraigned Wednesday, possibly in his Bellevue Hospital bed. Bickford, a former honor roll student and award-winning artist, landed on law enforcement radar earlier in December after family members reported his radicalization, the sources said.
“We’ve received some computers that we’re going through right now,” NYPD Chief of Intelligence and Counterterrorism Thomas Galati said in a Tuesday interview on NY-1, adding he expects federal charges to be added to the current counts of attempted murder and attempted assault.
[RELATED: Suspect in Times Square machete attack of NYPD officers charged with attempted murder]
Before heading to the periphery of the massive annual celebration, Bickford left behind a journal detailing his plan for a fight to the death with police and directions to leave all his belongings to his mother, sources said. The teen was on an FBI watch list and family members said Bickford had expressed an interest in joining the Taliban, the sources said.
He traveled south to Manhattan on a train this past Thursday and wound up staying at Forest Park in Queens before the attack, sources said. His brother was in the U.S. military, and sources said Bickford had urged his family members to accept Allah.
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