NEW YORK, Nov. 27 -- A third teenager was found guilty Wednesday in a Brooklyn court in the slaying of a token booth clerk that prosecutors have described as a copycat attack based on a movie scenario. Thomas Malik, 19, was found guilty of murder in the case of the group that sprayed gasoline through the slot of a subway token booth and torched the clerk inside.
The incident gained national notoriety when politicians, including Bob Dole, said that it had been inspired by scenes from 'The Money Train.' In the film, which was in theaters at the time of the attack, a pyromaniac sets token booths on fire. Another of the attackers, Vincent Ellerbe, was found guilty of murder Tuesday. Ellerbe was 17 at the time of the attack which kept the Brooklyn District Attorney from seeking the death penalty in the case and a sentencing date is yet to be set. James Irons, 18, was convicted of murder in the case last month. The incident occurred on Nov. 26, 1995 at about 1:30 a.m., when a group of young men tried to hold up the token booth at a subway station in the Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn. Prosecutors said gasoline was sprayed through the pay slot, then the attackers ignored the clerk's pleas to spare him and lit the fuel. The booth exploded, destroying the interior and burning away most of the clerk's clothing. The clerk, 50-year-old Harry Kaufman, suffered burns over 80 percent of his body and died two weeks later.