The criminal situation in the subway has deteriorated lately. NYPD Transportation Chief Kathleen O’Reilly said 42 attacks were reported in January, including 15 on police officers. For comparison: in the same month of 2019, three times less law enforcement officers were injured. O’Reilly said that in most cases, offenders dare to raise a hand against cops during arrests.
But not only. Recently, two officers were spat upon and hit several times in the face by a man who was reprimanded for smoking on the South Ferry platform.
There were more murders and robberies in the New York subway in the first month and a half of this year than in the same period in 2020. The same number of rapes. For the rest of the crimes, either a small increase, or the previous level. But we should not forget that the number of passengers due to the pandemic has decreased by 70%.
Kathleen O’Reilly believes that the answer to the rise in crime should be an increase in the number of police officers. “Passengers will only feel safe when they see NYPD staff regularly bypass trains, patrol platforms and are present at station entrances,” she said.
An additional 500 police officers were recently deployed to the subway. The MTA leadership is requesting another 1,000. However, both Mayor de Blasio and NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shi assure that five hundred is enough to put things in order.
CCTV cameras could help in the fight against delinquency, but their installation is very slow. Of the 472 New York Subway stations, only 60% are equipped with such cameras. They were supposed to be everywhere in line with MTA’s investment plan for 2020-2024. But due to the COVID-19 pandemic, everything was stopped. Now they are trying to urgently make up for lost time.
Sarah Feinberg, Acting President of NYC Transit, said the other day: “While the investment program is frozen, we have begun work on our own project and are now installing cameras wherever possible, especially on platforms.”
Crime has grown in subway