James Jackson, a white supremacist accused of fatally stabbing a black man in 2017 in New York City, has pleaded guilty to killing the then 66-year-old Timothy Caughman. Jackson received six counts which include charges of murder and hate crimes, ABC News reports.
Jackson told authorities that he planned to go to New York City from Baltimore to enact a killing spree of black men. The 30-year-old’s attorneys reportedly said that they advised Jackson not to plead guilty because they knew he would face a life sentence, possibly without parole. The ultimate court sentencing will occur on Feb. 13.
During a 2017 interview with the New York Daily News, Jackson revealed he wanted to purposefully split up interracial couples and kill “young thugs” and successful black men that put white women on a “wrong path.”
Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance said that Jackson’s conviction marks an important juncture in the criminal justice system because of the magnitude of his race-fueled crime. The incident falls under New York state’s “murder as a crime of terrorism” mandate.
According to a press release issued by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, Vance highlights New York State’s fight against hate crimes.
“This resolution won’t bring back Timothy Caughman, a beloved New Yorker who was executed for being black on a midtown street corner,” he continued. “It won’t reverse the alarming rise of white nationalism in America. It is, however, the loudest message that a civil society can send to would-be terrorists, and I thank our prosecutors and the NYPD Detectives whose tireless work enabled us to secure this landmark conviction and send this very loud message today.”
Caughman was stabbed in the back with a sword by Jackson while gathering bottles to recycle. After being stabbed, he reportedly rushed into a police station and died at a hospital.