The failure of security cameras in the New York subway station where a gunman opened fire this month is the subject of an investigation.
Acting Metropolitan Transportation Authority Inspector General Elizabeth Keating announced the probe Monday.
“As the horrific mass shooting two weeks ago in Sunset Park has raised questions about the MTA camera system, the Office of the Inspector General has initiated an inquiry into why the cameras were not transmitting on April 12 and a review of the maintenance and repair program for the critical equipment,” Keating said in a statement.
Police acknowledged that security cameras in three stations weren’t working on the morning of April 12, including the Brooklyn station where the gunman set off a smoke device and shot 10 people.
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After the April 12 attack at the 36th Street station in Sunset Park, police sources told NBC New York that the inability to access the station cameras slowed down the investigation. Had it not been for cell phone video, there would be little to no video showing what happened in the immediate aftermath of the alleged gunman opening fire and shooting 10 passengers on the packed N train.
A representative for the MTA said the cameras malfunctioned that day because of an internet server issue, and that the agency has "made significant use of the Transit Security Grant Program, but we have been disappointed that funding has been flat since 2012."
The MTA refuted claims that the malfunctioning camera hampered the investigation. Staffers said other video and other evidence in the system proved to be critical.
The MTA has nearly 10,000 cameras at its 472 subway stations, and other cameras in nearby stations helped police track suspect Frank James’ movements before and after the shooting.
James also left behind a bag containing weapons, smoke grenades and the key to a U-Haul truck he had driven. The truck was found parked near a station where authorities believe James entered the subway dressed in construction clothing.
He was apprehended the following day in New York and charged with a federal terrorism offense.
All of the shooting victims are expected to survive.
Investigators are also reviewing video and MetroCard swipes as they look into whether James took the Path train after the shooting to Newark, New Jersey, and spent the night in that city. They are also looking to see if he returned to Manhattan the following day via a Path train before his arrest.