Police on Wednesday night arrested a man suspected in the stabbing death of a 6-year-old boy and the knifing of his 7-year-old friend, a crime that terrified residents of a Brooklyn neighborhood and raised questions about the city's failure to install surveillance cameras in the victims' public housing project.
In a statement, police said Daniel St. Hubert was apprehended in Queens, less than an hour after Police Commissioner William J. Bratton held a news conference to announce the suspect's name and appealed for New Yorkers to be on the lookout for him.
At the news briefing, St. Hubert was described as a 27-year-old with a history of violence who had been paroled recently after serving time in a domestic assault case. Forensic evidence from the scene of last Sunday's apparently random stabbing of the children led police to identify St. Hubert as the suspect.
St. Hubert was suspected of killing Prince Joshua "PJ" Avitto and critically wounding Mikayla Capers after trapping them in an elevator as they rode upstairs to one of their apartments to get frozen treats after playing outside.
Police have said the same assailant who attacked the children may also be responsible for the stabbing death Friday of 18-year-old Tanaya Copeland in the same neighborhood.
Reward money for information leading to a suspect rose to $62,000 on Wednesday, and police released a sketch of a suspect based on Mikayla's description of her attacker. The investigation picked up speed in the afternoon as police were able to link evidence from the scene to St. Hubert.
Late in the evening, they released a photograph of St. Hubert, and less than an hour later, he was arrested.