‘Monsey slasher’ mentally unfit for trial, feds say



Accused Monsey Hanukkah slasher Grafton Thomas — who allegedly hacked five Jewish men with a machete in 2019, killing one of them — has been deemed unfit for trial by a psychologist, prosecutors and his attorneys wrote in a joint letter Wednesday.

Suspect Thomas Grafton was deemed unfit in a March 30 report submitted by Dr. Lea Ann Preston Baecht, the letter states. Prosecutors and Grafton’s attorneys do not expect the results to change.

“There currently is not a substantial probability that in the foreseeable future the defendant will attain the capacity to permit the proceedings to go forward,” they wrote.

The parties submitted a proposed order to White Plains federal court Judge Cathy Seibel that would dictate Grafton remain hospitalized by the Bureau of Prisons.

“His release would create a substantial risk of bodily injury to another person
or serious damage to property of another,” the text of the proposed order states.

Thomas is accused of going on a hacking rampage while wielding an 18-inch machete, injuring five men celebrating the Jewish Festival of Lights in Rabbi Chaim Rottenberg’s basement in Monsey on Dec. 28, 2019.

Josef Neumann, one of the victims who was most badly injured, eventually died in April after landing in a coma resulting from the attack.

Additional reporting by Priscilla DeGregory


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