John Cowell Photos: Full Story Of BART Stabbing Suspect

UPDATE: It was confirmed on Monday night that 27-year-old John Lee Conwell was taken into police custody just after 6:45 p.m.


John Cowell has been identified as the suspect who fatally stabbed 18-year-old Nia Wilson and injured her 20-year-old sister Tashiya late Sunday night after they got off of a BART train in Oakland at the MacArthur Station. Nia died from the attack, while her sister was transported to the local hospital in critical condition.

From the San Francisco Chronicle:

Ebony Monroe, a cousin of the victims, described Wilson as a “beautiful, sweet person” who loved her cousins, fashion and doing makeup. Monroe said Wilson had a boyfriend who drowned in a lake two years ago, and that she was celebrating his birthday on Sunday.“She needs her justice … she was just an innocent kid, and she didn’t deserve this.” Monroe said. “And he did this for no reason.”Monroe said a witness described the suspect as coming “out of nowhere.”

BART police released photos of Cowell on social media.

A manhunt was immediately underway, with investigators combing through security footage for any possible leads. The suspect was initially described as a heavyset white male around 5-foot-9 who is believed to be in his 20s or 30s.

“If you’re in the Oakland/Berkeley area be alert of your surroundings. A white male 5’9 with spiked hair on the side stabbed 2 sisters on Bart at MacArthur station the police are yet to catch him,” one Twitter user wrote.

Shortly after noon ET, BART police found a knife at a construction site near the MacArthur station where the attack took place. There search continued into the evening until the suspect was located.

Elissa Harrington, a reporter at KTVU in the Bay Area, shared a close-up photo of the knife though it was unknown whether it was used in the attack at the time it was discovered.

https://twitter.com/EHarringtonTV/status/1021417346953404417

The attack was believed to be random, and there is currently no motive for the attack.

https://twitter.com/veganwaterpls/status/1021389517742198784

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