The New York City police are searching for a man who pushed a subway commuter from the platform before fleeing in Brooklyn on Friday afternoon.
Security footage of the incident has been released and confirmed the victim was not struck by a train but injured physically.
According to the NYPD, the suspect “intentionally charged at a 32-year-old male victim without being provoked” at the Wyckoff Avenue and Myrtle Avenue subway station around 2.40 p.m., pushing him on the tracks.
A number of high-profile violent crimes have occurred in New York City in recent months, including crimes related to the subway system, prompting officials to beef up their crime fighting efforts.
Statistics from the New York Police Department show that as of October 17, crimes have increased more than 41% in the city’s subway system, with 1,813 incidents recorded so far this year, compared with 1,282 last year. So far this year, nine homicides have occurred in the city’s subway system, and 40 percent of those responsible had a history of mental illness.
New York City and state officials are bolstering their efforts to combat crime and mental illness in the subway system by increasing police presence and training officers on how to engage homeless people.
New initiatives include a significant investment from the state’s public emergency fund to support roughly 1,200 additional overtime officer shifts each day on subway platforms and trains. According to officials, the investment will bring the city a lot of money, but they did not reveal how much.
During a news conference on Saturday, Governor Kathy Hochul announced unarmed security guards will be employed at turnstiles as a way to strengthen security and discourage fare evasion.
Four major commuter rail hubs will have transit police officers, including Penn Station, Grand Central Station, Atlantic Terminal, and Sutphin-Archer (Jamaica) Station, which will free up 100 NYPD officers to deploy at other transit locations, according to a joint news release.
Hochul announced in September that every subway car would be equipped with two cameras by 2024 in order to enhance security. In addition to more than 200 cameras already in place across the system, the city will install 100 additional cameras in the coming days, the governor said.