ELIZABETH, N.J., Oct. 13 (UPI) — The man accused of detonating bombs in New York and New Jersey in September pleaded not guilty in his first court appearance Thursday afternoon.
Ahmad Khan Rahimi entered the not guilty plea by video from a hospital room, where he is recovering from gunshot wounds sustained during his arrest, after being unable to attend the hearing in person.
Rahimi faces state and federal charges for the bombings earlier this year — one in Manhattan that injured 31 people and another in New Jersey on the route of a charity race that did not injure anybody, as well as two other bombs, discovered in a trash can in a New Jersey train station and a pressure cooker bomb in Chelsea, that did not go off.
Police discovered a fingerprint on the pressure cooker and caught him on a surveillance camera before tracking him to Lindon, New Jersey, where he was arrested after a shootout.
Speaking while propped up in a hospital bed, his arms under a blanket, Rahimi told the judge he understood his rights and the charges against him.
Rahimi is charged with attempted murder of five police officers and illegal possession and use of a handgun in the shootout, and is being held on $5.2 million bail.
Rahimi has not yet been served with federal charges connected to the bombings, which include using weapons of mass destruction and bombing a public place, according to his lawyers.