By Gareth Vipers
and Omar Abdel-Baqui
BROOKLYN, N.Y.—Police named Frank James as the suspected gunman who opened fire on a Brooklyn subway train during Tuesday’s morning rush hour.
Hundreds of police officers spent the night searching for the suspect, who was originally named as a person of interest in the investigation, officials said. A New York Police Department spokeswoman wouldn’t confirm if anyone was in custody.
With the manhunt continuing, commuters streamed into New York City subways Wednesday morning under increased police presence. All of the city’s subway lines were running a full service on Wednesday morning. “B/W trains are running on their regular routes, and all D/N/R trains are stopping at 36 Street,” the Metropolitan Transportation Authority said.
Inside the 36th Street station, where 10 people were shot and wounded Tuesday, the morning commute appeared relatively normal. Commuters ran to catch their trains. Packed subway cars zoomed in and out of the station. Many straphangers had headphones in their ears or their faces buried in their phones.
Above ground, outside the station, TV equipment littered the sidewalk. Uniformed police officers were inside and around the station, but their presence inside wasn’t overwhelming.
A police officer at the station said “there are plain-clothed officers everywhere.”
“Anyone you see can be a cop,” another officer said.
Brooklyn resident Ahmed Mohamed said he commutes from the stop, which connects the diverse Sunset Park neighborhood to the major transit hub at Atlantic Avenue, every weekday morning. He said he was working when he heard the news of the shooting Tuesday.
“I became anxious, not for myself, but thinking of my 4-year-old son, and if he would have been on that train,” Mr. Mohamed said, before scrambling to catch a Manhattan-bound R train.
Fouzia, a Brooklyn resident who only gave her first name, said she commutes to her job at a Manhattan home healthcare company daily from the 36th Street station.
She said she relies on the subway and will continue taking it. “I’m not scared,” she said. “I believe, whatever happens, happens, and that this was an [isolated] incident.”
The attack occurred as a Manhattan-bound train was approaching the 36th Street station in the Sunset Park neighborhood of Brooklyn at about 8:30 a.m. ET. The suspect put on a gas mask and took a canister out of his bag and opened it, filling the train car with smoke, said New York City Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell.
“He then opened fire, striking multiple people on the subway and on the platform,” Ms. Sewell said at a news conference Tuesday afternoon. Ten people were injured by gunfire, and 13 others were treated for smoke inhalation, panic attacks or falls.
Police officials said they found a van abandoned on the nearby Kings Highway that they thought the suspect used in connection with the shooting.
Ms. Sewell described the subject as a 5-foot-5-inch Black man who was dressed in a green construction vest and a gray hooded sweatshirt. A 9mm handgun, extended magazines, a liquid believed to be gasoline, a hatchet, and consumer-grade fireworks were found at the scene, she said. No active explosive devices were found at the scene and the incident wasn’t being investigated as an act of terrorism, police said.
Police named Mr. James as a suspect Wednesday morning after earlier describing him as a person of interest in the investigation. Officials said he has addresses in Philadelphia and Wisconsin.
The shooting comes amid a recent surge in violent crimes in the city. Shootings are up 8.4% year to date across New York City, at 322 incidents, compared with 297 in the same period in 2021, according to the latest NYPD data.
Mayor Eric Adams, who is currently isolated after testing positive for Covid-19, said he has been in touch with police officials.
“We will not allow New Yorkers to be terrorized, even by a single individual,” the Democrat said in a video posted to Twitter on Tuesday.
Mr. Adams told a local radio station that the camera system at the station was malfunctioning. The Metropolitan Transportation Authority didn’t respond to a request for comment.
The malfunction of cameras in the subway station may hinder efforts by police to identify a suspect, former NYPD detective sergeant Felipe Rodriguez said. Smoke in the subway station and the gunman’s use of a gas mask will also present challenges, said Mr. Rodriguez, who is a professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice.
Mr. Rodriguez said the widespread use of masks to prevent the spread of coronavirus also will be an obstacle for investigators. “They’re really going to have a hard time,” he said. “The plus side is that the firearm was dropped at the scene.”
—Joseph De Avila contributed to this article.