A white US army veteran accused of fatally stabbing a 66-year-old black man has been charged with murder as an act of terrorism after telling police he was planning a race-based killing spree. James Harris Jackson, 28, appeared briefly in court on Monday and did not speak. Prosecutors had previously also charged him with murder as a hate crime. Jackson’s attorney had no comment. Jackson is accused of killing Timothy Caughman, 66, a stranger to him. Caughman was attacked from behind last week as he was collecting bottles for recycling.

“Last week, with the total presence of mind, he acted on his plan, randomly selecting a beloved New Yorker solely on the basis of his skin colour, and stabbing him repeatedly and publicly on a Midtown street corner,” DA Cyrus Vance said in a statement.

“James Jackson wanted to kill black men, planned to kill black men, and then did kill a black man. He chose Midtown as his crime scene because Manhattan is the media capital of the world and a place where people of different races live together and love one another.”

Jackson was charged with murder as an act of terrorism in the first and second degrees, murder in the second degree as a hate crime, and three counts of criminal possession of a weapon. Jackson’s attorney declined to comment.

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