Police searching for suspect in deadly sidewalk knife attack of Brooklyn activist

New York City police are looking for a man seen on surveillance video stabbing a man to death early Monday in Brooklyn.

Ryan Carson, 32, of Brooklyn, was killed in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Bedford-Stuyvesant shortly before 4 a.m. Monday, police said.

Officers found Carson with multiple stab wounds to the chest and was taken to a hospital and pronounced dead.

No one had been arrested as of Wednesday afternoon, police said.

Ryan Carson, right, in a surveillance video moments before he was stabbed to death in front of his girlfriend.Ryan Carson, right, in a surveillance video moments before he was stabbed to death in front of his girlfriend.via NBC New York

During a media briefing Wednesday, NYPD Chief of Detectives Joseph Kenny said investigators had developed a suspect and were trying to establish probable cause to make an arrest.

He said after Carson was fatally stabbed, the knife-wielding man also kicked Carson in the chest.

The assailant then threatened to stab a female companion who was with Carson and spat in her face before fleeing, Kenny said.

Carson, wearing a suit, is seen on surveillance video obtained by NBC New York in a confrontation with a man who appears to be holding a knife in his right hand.

The man can be heard telling Carson, “I’m going to kill you right now.”

Carson is heard telling the man, “Chill, chill, chill.”

The man takes a swing at Carson’s face, and Carson runs away before tripping over a bus bench and falling to the ground. That’s when the man stabs Carson multiple times, according to the video.

NBC New York reported that Carson’s girlfriend witnessed the violence. The pair had attended a wedding and were waiting for a bus before the fatal attack.

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Carson worked for the nonprofit New York Public Interest Research Group, which, according to its website, launches public education campaigns “to produce policies that strengthen democracy.”

Ryan Carson advocates for more safe injection sites in a video for NO OD NY.Ryan Carson advocates for more safe injection sites in a video for NO OD NY.NO OD NY via NBC New York

In a statement about his death, the nonprofit said Carson, a longtime campaign organizer, was killed during a “random street encounter near his home.”

“His engaging personality, hearty laugh and wide-ranging intelligence were keys to his success in advancing the causes he deeply cared about in his work and personal life,” the statement said.

Carson’s relatives could not be immediately reached for comment Wednesday afternoon.

Antonio Planas

Antonio Planas is a breaking news reporter for NBC News Digital.