James Jackson Indicted on Charges of Murder in the First and Second Degree as a Hate Crime

March 27, 2017

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the indictment of JAMES JACKSON, 28, for fatally stabbing 66-year-old Timothy Caughman on March 20, 2017. JACKSON is charged in New York State Supreme Court with Murder in the First Degree and Murder in the Second Degree as a Crime of Terrorism, Murder in the Second Degree as a Hate Crime, as well as three counts of Criminal Possession of a Weapon.[1]

“James Jackson prowled the streets of New York for three days in search of a black person to assassinate in order to launch a campaign of terrorism against our Manhattan community and the values we celebrate,” said District Attorney Vance. “Last week, with total presence of mind, he acted on his plan, randomly selecting a beloved New Yorker solely on the basis of his skin color, and stabbing him repeatedly and publicly on a Midtown street corner. James Jackson wanted to kill black men, planned to kill black men, and then did kill a black man. He chose Midtown as his crime scene because Manhattan is the media capital of the world, and a place where people of different races live together and love one another. We must never take for granted New York’s remarkable diversity. We must celebrate it, protect it, and refuse to let violence and hate undermine the progress we have made as a city, a state, and a nation.”

Assistant District Attorney Joan Illuzzi, Special Counsel to the District Attorney, is handling the prosecution of this case, with the assistance of Assistant District Attorneys Nicholas Penfold and Juan Abreu of Trial Bureau 80, under the supervision of Executive Assistant District Attorney John Irwin, Chief of the Trial Division.

[1] The charges contained in the indictment are merely allegations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. All factual recitations are derived from documents filed in court and statements made on the record in court.

Defendant Information:

JAMES JACKSON, D.O.B. 5/26/1988
Baltimore, MD


  • Murder in the First Degree (in furtherance of an act of terrorism), a class A-I felony, one count
  • Murder in the Second Degree as a Crime of Terrorism, a class A-I felony, one count
  • Murder in the Second Degree as a Hate Crime, a class A-I felony, one count
  • Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Fourth Degree, a class A misdemeanor, three counts