David Jakubonis, a 43-year-old man attacked New York Republican gubernatorial nominee Rep. Lee Zeldin at an upstate campaign event Thursday evening.
Lee Zeldin, had been on a small stage in front of supporters railing against Hochul’s COVID-19 response and vaccine mandates.
David Jakubonis: How an Iraq War veteran attempted to stab NY gubernatorial candidate Lee Zeldin
The incident happened as Zeldin, who is challenging incumbent Democratic Gov. Kathy Hochul this November, was addressing a Veterans of Foreign Wars post in the town of Perinton, outside Rochester.
The attacker climbed onto a low stage where the congressman spoke to a crowd of dozens, flanked by bales of hay and American flags. A video posted on Twitter shows the two falling to the ground as other people try to intervene.
The assailant brandished a pointed metal object shaped like a cat’s head, photos from the scene show.
The attacker swung the weapon toward Zeldin’s neck and told him, “You’re done,” according to the sheriff’s spokesperson, Deputy Brendan Hurley.
In response to a question about what security was at the event, Murphy said: “Congressman Zeldin had private security at the event and law enforcement arrived on the scene within a few minutes. Security will be increased starting with our first event this morning.”
Among those who helped to subdue the attacker was Zeldin’s running mate, former New York Police Department Deputy Inspector Alison Esposito, Murphy said.