As part of the slow reopening of New York City, the subway system returned to 24-hour service this week after more than a year of restricted service during the pandemic. That’s potentially good news for people who work the late shift and those venturing out for evening entertainment activities, but it’s also drawn the attention of muggers and other criminals who prey on commuters. The job of the bad guys was made considerably easier by the city’s decision to bow to the wishes of the “abolish the police” crowd and remove many metro police officers from rail stations. Now there are muggers and crazy people running wild and the commuters are calling for the city to bring back the cops in full force. (CBS New York)
Increased attacks on the subway have some riders fearing their commute.
The NYPD is promising to put more officers in subway stations, and on Tuesday CBS2’s Marcia Kramer got a first hand look at their safety strategy.
An unhinged rider, chased a subway conductor into a token booth early Monday and threatened to hurt him.
“I’m going to knock you out. I’m going to knock you out,” the rider is heard saying on video.
An off-duty rail conductor was nearly blinded by a random assailant this week. Another man was slashed in the mouth with a knife right in front of his children. Another commuter was pushed onto the tracks by a deranged homeless person, but thankfully avoided being struck by a train.
Now the NYPD is scrambling to find enough officers to staff up the metro stations again. It’s not as if Bill de Blasio wasn’t warned about this. Last summer, activists complained that the metro police were too rough on the homeless people who tend to sleep in the subway stations and they were arresting too many people for not paying fares or smoking pot in the stations. They insisted that “counselors” would be better suited for keeping the peace in the tunnels. The city obediently moved to decrease the funding for police at the metro stations.
Now it’s the commuters of the Big Apple that are paying the price and City Hall is getting an earful about it. But as with everything else since the “abolish the police” crowd got a seat at the table, they can’t undo all of the damage overnight. The NYPD is short on staffing and their reduced budget is already strained to the limit. The remaining officers on the force are largely disheartened and not terribly motivated because of the treatment they’ve received.
Gee, if only someone had warned Bill de Blasio that this might happen. But how could they possibly have known?