Officials: 'Cops, cameras and care' at forefront of new plan to combat NYC transit system violence
Gov. Kathy Hochul, Mayor Eric Adams and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority announced a new plan to combat the recent surge in violence in the New York City Transit system.
Commuter fear is mounting following a violent weekend. A 62-year-old man fell onto the train tracks after he was punched in the head at 149th Street and Grand Concourse Sunday night. This happened just hours before a teenager was stabbed near the 191st Station.
Officers from the NYPD's Community Affairs division were at the Times Square subway station Monday to hand out flyers with safety tips and interact with riders.
“We want out folks that use our transit system on a regular basis to be a little more aware of their surroundings,” says Maximo Tolentino, commanding officer of the Community Affairs Bureau. “At the end of the day, this is not about one individual, this is the responsibility of everybody in the transit system."
While some commuters say they see this as an effective response, one rider told News 12 he doesn't think this effort addresses the root cause of the violent incidents.
“This is not going to go away. How is this going to make homelessness go away? It's not,” he says.
A much larger plan was unveiled over the weekend that would help address homelessness as well as crime on the subway.
The safety plan is now the new three Cs approach -- cops, cameras and care. It aims to include more police presence on platforms and trains by increasing overtime hours and reassigning officers to the subway.
Hochul and Adams believe the answer is to add 1,200 overtime NYPD shifts to 300 stations. In their announcement Saturday, they said MTA police will take over four of the major railway hubs to allow 100 more NYPD officers to patrol the subway system.
The plan will also have MTA police, NYPD officers, and EMT receive more training to handle mental health issues on the subway. Commuters told News 12 they worry these changes won't help.