A man prosecutors say attacked three police officers with a machete near Times Square on New Year’s Eve was arraigned Wednesday morning on charges of attempting to murder a police officer. Trevor Bickford did not enter a plea, and his case will be sent to a grand jury.
Bickford, 19, who was shot during the attack, is still being held at Bellevue Hospital. He attended the arraignment via a video livestream. The screen was not visible to reporters.
“Trevor Bickford, who is just a teenager, has no prior contact with the criminal legal system. Earlier today, Mr. Bickford was arraigned from Bellevue Hospital after languishing in NYPD custody for nearly four days despite a well-established court requirement that an arraignment take place within 24 hours of arrest,” said Redmond Haskins, a spokesman for Legal Aid, which is representing Bickford. “We’ve just received initial discovery from the district attorney’s office, and we’ll have more to say about this case after a thorough review and investigation. For now, we ask the public to refrain from drawing hasty conclusions and to respect the privacy of our client’s family.”
If Bickford is convicted of the top charge against him, he will face a mandatory sentence of life in prison.
Prosecutor Lucy Nicholas said in court that Bickford traveled to New York City from his home in Maine, and was motivated by religious extremism. She said Bickford told police all government officials are targets because they “cannot be proper Muslims because the U.S. government supports Israel.”