The former football player of Buffalo State, Malachi Capers, was shot at point-blank range on 27th July. The incident occurred at 136 Deli & Grill in Queens, New York. Jeffery Thurston, the alleged suspect is in police custody as reported by the authorities on Wednesday.
Malachi is fighting for his life in Jamaica Hospital. A third surgery was performed on Friday for treating his damaged kidneys. Family members have high hopes for his recovery. Christian Ozolins, Head Coach of Buffalo State Football team, has wished for the speedy recovery of the 20-year-old victim.
What happened at the crime scene?
The crime took place in the Queens store of Deli & Grills on Monday afternoon. Malachi bumped into a stranger while he was walking passed by him. In response to that minor bump, the stranger punched Malachi on his face and ran out of the store.
Malachi chased the stranger, and both of them indulged in a physical fight. After a few minutes, the stranger can be seen pulling out his gun and shooting Malachi. The crime has been recorded in the surveillance cameras of the store.
The stranger has been identified as Jeffrey Thurston by the New York Police Department. Thurston has a criminal history and has been arrested twice. He was arrested in 2011 for fighting on a school bus and in April for breaking into his ex-girlfriend’s home. He was also charged for firing on an occupied vehicle on 8th July.
Cops from the regional task force reached the crime spot as soon as they got the information. They contacted all the relatives and friends of Thurston, who has stayed with him in the past. The cops found him in St. Albans on Wednesday afternoon.
The cops chased and caught him in a backyard. They were not able to recover the gun from him. Rodney Harrison, the chief of New York Police Department, applauded the regional Detective Squad for catching Thurston within 48 hours.
Melinda Katz, the Attorney of Queens District, told that Thurston had been charged for attempt to murder, assault and criminal possession of a weapon. He will face imprisonment for up to 25 years.
History of Malachi
The 20-year-old Malachi Capers was a former defender in the football team of Buffalo State College. He had to leave the team because of a shoulder injury. His uncle, Andre Capers, said that Malachi wanted to be a psychologist, and is a hard-working student. He is very close to his mother, and this news has horrified the whole family.
The Head coach and players of the State Football team shared some of their interactions with Malachi. His teammate Naseer Jackson told that Malachi is a person who does not talk much but is there for his teammates always. He is stunned by this incident and is praying for his speedy recovery.
The coach recalled how this young man took a tiring 14-hour round-trip from New York to Buffalo to convince the coach that he could play. He said that Malachi was one of the most liked members of their team. He remained friends with many of his teammates and continued his education at Buffalo State after leaving the team.
The incident opened the wounds of family
Malachi's uncle Andre Capers told that the footballer's father was fired by a stranger ten years ago. The crime is still a mystery. The stranger shot six bullets, and Omar Capers died on the spot. Andre said that this incident is a flashback for their family.
He told that the decade-ago-incident had devastated their family but Malachi pushed through the incident and came out as a fighter. The family felt sorry for the suspect. At first, they were angry but later realized he might be having some mental health issues. They have forgiven the suspect.
To sum it up
The incidents of violence have increased in the US, and Malachi Capers is a recent victim. A stranger shot him in Queens and is currently recovering in Jamaica Hospital. The regional task force has caught the suspect who is identified as Jeffrey Thurston. Thurston can be imprisoned for 25 years. The incident has left Malachi's family devastated, and they wish him a speedy recovery.