Police have arrested Roland Codrington, 35, in connection with a two-person slashing spree in New York City. The incident led to the death of doctor Bruce Maurice Henry, 60, on Friday at Marcus Garvey Park in Harlem.
According to police, Codrington is a convicted felon with at least twelve prior arrests, including some vehicle-related arrests in 2022 and an assault using a weapon in 2021. In addition, he has a record of criminal possession of a knife in 2013 and two assaults in 2012.
Codrington also allegedly slashed a 51-year-old man in the East Village earlier this month and attacked two people in an East Harlem bar briefly before the killing of the NYC doctor.
The police had sighted Codrington in Henry’s stolen vehicle near Jerome Avenue and 166th Street in The Bronx on Saturday before they seized the dangerous ex-con on Christmas Eve.
“Three sharp-eyed officers with the 30th Precinct made the apprehension,” NYPD Chief of Patrol John Chell said.
When cops approached the suspect, he was in the company of four others. He then asked the officer to let them go, saying, “I’m the one you’re looking for,” he then surrendered without a fight.
Three sharp-eyed officers with the 30th Precinct made the apprehension.
John Chell, NYPD Chief of Patrol
Codrington’s heinous spree is said to have started on December 19 with the killing of James Cunningham, who was discovered dead on Avenue A near East 13th Street. According to police, the victim went to a nearby bar, drank some seltzer and then left.
A bartender said he had heard a commotion and gone outside to investigate. He then discovered Cunningham in a blood-covered pool on the road with a 10-inch laceration wound on his neck.
NYPD Chief of Detectives James Essig said Codrington and Cunningham had no prior interactions. Codrington was with her girlfriend when they ran into Cunningham, then had a 20-second caught-on-camera argument which led to the slashing.
“And our perpetrator just takes out a knife and slashes across the neck and then leaves,” Essig said.
Essig said Codrington had been kicked out of the bar a week before and felt wronged by the treatment. He entered the bar with a baseball bat and a pit bull and choked a 29-year-old female bartender at Teddy’s Bar on Second Avenue near East 112th Street in Manhattan on December 22. Then he knifed two customers who came to help the victim. Finally, he went behind the bar, attacked the bartender, and “destroyed property.”
According to the NYPD, Codrington’s girlfriend was present at several of the attacks. For example, in the footage at Teddy’s Bar, his unknown girlfriend can be seen holding back the dog, ready to strike, as Codrington approaches the woman behind the bar.
And our perpetrator just takes out a knife and slashes across the neck and then leaves.
James Essig, NYPD Chief of Detectives
“When two customers intervened, they were both stabbed with a large knife that the male was carrying,” Essig said.
Essig said the dangerous man went for a walk in Marcus Garvey Park after the incident. He allegedly met Henry and got into an altercation with the pediatrician before slashing his throat and stabbing him multiple times.
The police said there was no motive for the heinous slaughter. The doctor’s body was still warm when discovered early Friday, around 2:15 a.m., on a stairwell near 120th Street in Marcus Garvey Park.
Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell said the lack of CCTV in the park forces detectives in the NYPD to put more effort into solving the pediatrician’s murder.
Without any video in the park detectives in the NYPD got to work.
Keechant Sewell, New York City Police Commissioner
Essig said police could link the attacker to the slashing and the bar assault but not to Henry’s murder until they had pulled him over in a Mercedes in the Bronx.
Sewell described Codrington’s arrest as the outcome of department-wide collaborative efforts of “intelligence, resources and skill.”
The police are now investigating other stabbings in the city to see if there are any interconnections. They charged Codrington with two murders, two attempted murders, one second-degree assault and one count of criminal mischief. In all three cases, he was scheduled to attend Manhattan Criminal Court on Monday and was detained without bail.