Overall Subway Crime is Down, while Assaults on the Rails Spiked by 40%
New York City subways have actually seen fewer crimes from Jan. 1 to July 18 this year than the underground transit system saw in 2020’s first six months, however, felony assaults, which have created fear and outrage in the city, have spiked in 2021, according to NYPD data.
Since the beginning of 2021, felony assaults have risen 40% since this time last year, NYPD data show, however, thanks to an influx of 1,100 police officers to subway stations in June, transit crime fell overall.
The addition of officers came after months of MTA requests and amid a surge in subway platform attacks.
On April 27, New York City labor leaders supplemented the fervent requests of the MTA to increase the police presence on the subways.
In a letter, prominent city labor leaders asked Mayor Bill de Blasio “at least temporarily” to provide more police officers to the subways, which many workers were scared to ride because they feared the increased crime.
“When working people say they feel that they need more help, I always take that seriously,” responded the mayor, who then went on to minimize the safety concerns of so many New Yorkers who rely on public transit to get to work every day.
On May 17, the city recently added 500 additional police officers into subway stations, but city workers and labor leaders feel that more trained police officers are needed in the face of a series of recent violent crimes on the rails.
The mayor told BoroPark24 that he understood that people felt safer when they saw more uniformed police officers standing guard at subways stations.
“The recent decline in transit crime started in June, following the addition of more than 1,100 NYPD officers to the subway system: which came after months of MTA requests,” an MTA spokesperson said. “The trend is good news for our riders and is reflective of the MTA’s ‘all of the above’ approach to improving safety and security in the transit system: with additional security personnel, cameras, and increased ridership.”
Mayor Bill de Blasio Thursday stressed the importance of mass transit for New Yorkers.
“If they can’t depend on the subway, the city doesn’t work,” he said. “The subway is the heartbeat of the city, the heartbeat of the entire metropolitan area.”