Nicole Robinson was waiting for her train at the top of the city on Thursday night, 16 feet from the edge of the platform. And she was not alone.
“I don’t feel safe anymore. I really don’t feel safe. I’d rather ride a bus for two hours than 45 minutes by train,” said subway driver Nicole Robinson.
Despite intensified action by New York City police, many New Yorkers are still deeply concerned about crime both on the subway and on the streets.
Last month, total crime in New York grew by 59% compared to the same period in 2021.
Crime related to assault and robbery increased by 22% and 56%. Large-scale theft has increased by 79%, and car theft – more than doubled.
A child was hit on the head in Times Square, a woman in Queens was attacked with a hammer, and Christina Lee, killed in Chinatown. All the incidents were accidental, pointless and unprovoked attacks.
Former NYPD Detective Chief Robert Boyce says this is alarming.
“We’re at different times now. It’s not a surge. It’s not a trend. We have a surge in crime now,” Boyce said.
Chief Boyce acknowledges the officers’ detention, but accuses prosecutors and judges of lowering the crime rate.
“They reduce the classification of crimes to the status of offenses, and then release them,” he said. “You can’t hold anyone in line with bail reform laws for wrongdoing.”
But Boyce and other experts stress that there are other factors. The city’s inability to cope with the crisis of homelessness and mental illness has made streets and trains less safe.
New York City Mayor Eric Adams promised to change the situation last month. And if crime in transit increased by 73%, then only last week the number of arrests during transit increased by 64%.
“Nothing happens in New York overnight. But I think with the right resources, yes, I think it’s possible,” said subway rider Peter Brill, when asked if crime could turn around.
The number of shootings rose sharply in January, but leveled off last month.
This must happen in the transit system before most New Yorkers begin to feel safe.
Copyright © 2022 WABC-TV. All rights reserved.