California subway killing suspect turns himself in to cops
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — San Francisco Bay Area authorities have arrested a man suspected of punching a subway passenger who died of head injuries this month in one of three recent homicides in the region’s subway train stations.
Jashawn Combs, 24, turned himself in after police circulated photos of the July 21 assault captured on surveillance cameras, Bay Area Rapid Transit spokesman Chris Filippi said Monday.
Transit police said a suspect punched Don Stevens once in the head with a closed fist on a subway platform. Stevens, 47, fell and struck his head on the concrete floor. A coroner said Stevens, who was homeless, died of head injuries.
Filippi said Combs was accompanied by family members when he turned himself in, but did not know if a lawyer was present. He was booked on suspicion of murder and Alameda County Jail records did not indicate if Combs is represented by an attorney.
Investigators said the surveillance video shows Stevens and an unidentified passenger arguing as they got off a train in the city of San Leandro next to Oakland.
The video then shows a suspect police allege is Combs punching Stevens on the platform. The video suggests Combs did not know Stevens or the unidentified passenger, BART Police Chief Carlos Rojas said last week.
Stevens’ death happened the day before an Oakland teen was stabbed to death and her sister was seriously injured as they tried to change subway trains.
John Lee Cowell, a 27-year-old transient with a history of violence was arrested and charged with the murder of Nia Wilson, 18, and the attempted murder of her sister Letifah Wilson. Rojas said it appeared that the attack was “random and unprovoked” but an investigation is still underway.
Cowell has been assigned a public defender from Alameda county, but the public defender’s office did not immediately return a telephone message Tuesday seeking comment.
In a third attack on the subway system this month, another passenger died July 22 from injuries sustained four days earlier during an on a train platform.
Abdul Bey, 20, was arrested on a battery charge after he allegedly got into a fight with Gerald Bisbee, 51, on a train on July 18. Bisbee left the train with a bloody lip and small cut on the back of his knee.
Bisbee sought medical attention the next day after falling ill. He was examined, treated and discharged that night and found dead in his home July 20. Police said he died from an infection of the knee wound.
Bey is represented by the Contra Costa County public defender’s office, which did not immediately return a telephone message Tuesday seeking comment.