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4 homeless men believe to be beaten to death with a 'metal object' while sleeping in NY
The man accused of bludgeoning four sleeping homeless men to death has confessed to the crime, prosecutors say.
Randy Rodriguez Santos, 24, appeared in court for an arraignment Sunday after being taken into custody early Saturday morning following the bloody killing spree in Manhattan's Chinatown.
'While he was in the 5th Precinct, he was shown video of the attacks and he admitted that he was the person in the video,' Manhattan Assistant District Attorney Alfred Peterson said.
This comes as horrifying surveillance video emerged showing Santos beating a sleeping man on a New York street with a metal bar in a bloody spree that left four homeless men dead and another seriously injured.
Randy Rodriguez Santos, 24, appeared in court for an arraignment Sunday after being taken into custody early Saturday morning following the bloody killing spree in Manhattan's Chinatown
Police said they found Santos carrying the metal bar he used to allegedly beat four homeless men to death and seriously injure another
Peterson revealed that Santos allegedly used a 3foot, 15pound piece of construction metal that was 'covered in blood and hair'
Police said they found Santos wandering the streets with the metal bar still in his hands soon after they responded to a 911 assault call.
Peterson didn't provide a motive for gruesome killings, but said that 'all of the people were sleeping' and his actions were 'unprovoked.
The chilling six-second surveillance video, obtained by U.S-Chinese newspaper World Journal, allegedly shows Santos using the metal bar to beat one of the men.
The attacks left blood splattered on the doorways and sidewalks where the men had been sleeping.
Santos, who has a history of violence and a lengthy arrest record, has since been charged with four counts of murder, one count of attempted murder and marijuana possession.
A gruesome surveillance video allegedly shows Randy Rodriguez Santos using a metal bar to beat a sleeping man on a New York street in a bloody spree that left four homeless men dead and another seriously injured
Santos, 24, was taken into custody early Saturday morning following the bloody killing spree in Manhattan's Chinatown. He has been charged with four counts of murder and one count of attempted murder
According to The Post, Santos has been living in an abandoned building in the Bronx since his family kicked him out of their apartment next door
According to The Post, Santos has been living in an abandoned building in the Bronx since his family kicked him out of their apartment next door.
Neighbors told The Post that his family hordered him out of their apartment about a year ago.
'I just saw him on Friday! He didn't look so good,' a neighbor said, who did not wish to be named. 'He was not normal at all, talking to himself, he didn't look clean.'
'Someone should've helped him, he should've been taken to the hospital.'
Police said Santos, who they say is also homeless, underwent a psychiatric evaluation ahead of his arraignment.
According to his social media accounts, Santos is believed to have a young son but it is not clear if he has custody.
His Facebook profile image features the cover of a book written by evangelist Billy Graham and is based on the key to personal peace. His Facebook introduction translates to 'I am the tranquil type, there is no game'.
Santos has also previously commented about knowing one of the men involved in a brutal killing outside a Bronx bodega and suggested the killer should rot in prison for his crimes.
He has been arrested at least a half-dozen other times in the past two years and three of those times were on assault charges.
The suspect's mother, Fioraliza Rodriguez, 55, told the New York Daily News she had kicked him out about three years ago.
She said he struggled with drugs, assaulted her and his grandfather, and stole from the family.
The NYPD released this photo showing the piece of metal that Santos allegedly used to beat to death four sleeping homeless men early Saturday
Santos, 24, was taken into custody early Saturday morning following the bloody killing spree in Manhattan's Chinatown
'I never thought he would kill someone,' she said. 'I was afraid of him, though, because he punched me. That's when I told him to get out of my house.'
Family members told the newspaper that Santos started using drugs when he arrived from their native Dominican Republic about four years ago.
'When I told him to leave, he came back and threatened me,' the suspect's mother said.
'He said when I go back to Santo Domingo, he'll get people to cut my face.'
The attack Santos is suspected of carrying out early Saturday left four men dead and another homeless man with serious injuries.
The victims, all men, were attacked as they slept in doorways and sidewalks in three different locations in Chinatown, which is packed during daylight hours but empties out at night.
Police responded to a 911 call just before 2am as one assault was in progress.
They found one man dead in the street and a second with critical head injuries. A search of the neighborhood turned up three additional bodies.
His Facebook profile image features the cover of a book written by evangelist Billy Graham and is based on the key to personal peace
Police officers escort Randy Rodriguez Santos from the 5th Precinct to a vehicle bound for a hospital for evidence collection on Saturday
Police said they recovered the weapon, which was still in the suspect's hands, when Santos was arrested.
An 83-year-old man named Cheun Kok was among those killed. He was sleeping at the intersection of Bowery and Doyers streets when he was fatally attacked.
The identities of the other victims have not been released.
Two of the men were killed on The Bowery, which cuts through the heart of Chinatown and has for decades been known as New York's skid row. Two more died on East Broadway, the neighborhood's main street.
The lone known survivor was hospitalized in critical condition. Police planned to interview him as soon as possible.
Another homeless man who had slept in the area, Stephen Miller, said he knew one of the victims as kind and quiet.
'No one knew him by name, but we saw him every day,' Miller said.
'At this point, I'm just sad. This guy never did anything. Just had a life to live. It sucks that he's out here in the rain and everything, but it doesn't mean he doesn't have a life to live.'
Two of the men were killed on The Bowery. Pictured is the crime scene in that area showing spatters of blood on a window
Close ups of one of the crime scenes, showing blood spatter against a wall (left) and what appears to be a lock of hair (right)
Police are seen here loading cardboard boxes that appears to be spattered with blood into Chinatown's 5th Precinct on Saturday morning
New York City's homeless population has grown to record levels over the past decade, and the homeless remain among the most vulnerable residents. In the past five years, an average of seven have been slain each year.
Mayor Bill de Blasio launched new homeless outreach efforts early in his tenure in an attempt to move more people off the street and into shelters, but the program has faced challenges. City efforts to build more homeless shelters have dragged due to neighborhood opposition.
De Blasio tweeted Saturday that he's 'stunned and horrified by this senseless act of violence against the most vulnerable members of our community'.
The attacks happened in one of the few downtown Manhattan areas that has retained its character as a center for new immigrants, through gentrification has started to creep in lately.
During the day, it bustles with small shops, restaurants and markets doing business in Chinese, as a mix of residents and tourists pack the sidewalks. At night it can be desolate in some sections.
NYC authorities said four men, who are believed to be homeless, were beaten to death with a 'metal object' while they were sleeping.
Officers responded to a 911 call for a person being assaulted in the vicinity of 2 Bowery in Manhattan's Chinatown district around 1.49am Saturday morning.
When responding officers arrived at the location, they found an unconscious male in his 60s lying on the ground with severe head trauma.
A second male, 49, who was also suffering from head trauma, approached officers at the scene. The elderly man was pronounced dead at the scene.