NEW YORK (PIX11) – A suspect was arrested Thursday in connection with the stabbing death of an activist in Bed-Stuy, according to police.

Brian Dowling, 18, was charged with murder and criminal possession of a weapon, according to officials.

The victim, identified as 32-year-old Ryan Carson, was sitting on a bench with his girlfriend near Lafayette Avenue and Malcolm X Boulevard shortly before 4 a.m. Monday when the suspect walked by, kicked mopeds, and turned back to accuse Carson of looking at him, police said.

The suspect then lunged at the couple, according to authorities, and Carson put himself in front of his girlfriend. He was stabbed three times and died in the hospital, police said.

A female companion was also seen arguing with the suspect minutes before the stabbing, according to an NYPD official. She called him “Brian” before they both fled the location, the official said.

Erin Pflaumer is a digital content producer from Long Island who has covered both local and national news since 2018. She joined PIX11 in 2023. See more of her work here.