NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The NYPD is looking for a suspect in an attack on a subway conductor in Brooklyn.
The assault left the transit worker seriously hurt, and also disrupted service, CBS2’s Jenna DeAngelis reported Thursday.
“Nobody should be attacked doing their job. Everyone should feel safe, right?” East Flatbush resident Sean Hutchinson said.
But that’s not how Hutchinson and other commuters feel after hearing police say the conductor was attacked on Wednesday at Beverly Road station by a suspect allegedly wearing a black mask.
“Usually around here at 7 o’clock, it’s usually crowded, so that’s a little unusual for that to happen here at this time,” Hutchinson said.
The incident happened on board a No. 5 train stopped at the station, impacting other trains as emergency crews rushed to the scene to help.
“I was heading home on the train last night, heard about it, got delayed, had to take a whole different route. It took me like two hours to get home,” resident Kieran Alexieff said.
According to police, the 36-year-old train conductor, a father of two, instructed a passenger not to ride between the train cars, and after doing so the passenger allegedly punched the conductor in the face, knocking him down.
A union representative said the conductor went to check on a door that wasn’t closing, saw a rider with his foot blocking it, and as he approached was hit with an object — possibly a club or bat.
“He seems pretty banged up. He’s in a lot of pain. He’s having trouble speaking,” Transport Workers Union Local 100 Vice President Eric Loegel said.
To make matters worse, DeAngelis was told the conductor was supposed to leave for vacation on Thursday, but instead spent Wednesday night in Kings County Hospital.
“This man was just doing his job as a public servant to the city of New York, to the Transit Authority, operating a train … and in the course of doing his job some maniac strikes him over the head. There’s absolutely no justification for these types of attacks against NYC Transit workers,” Loegel said.
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority agrees, saying in a statement that “Assaulting a Transit employee under any circumstances is appalling.”
The agency is working with the NYPD to try and catch the suspect who left the station and ran off after the attack.
Also, the NYPD is searching for two suspects in an attack on an MTA bus driver in the Bronx. The incident happened Monday after the 54-year-old driver got out of his BX-27 bus to check on a school bus blocking the road at the corner of Boyton Street and Westchester Avenue in the Soundview section of the borough.
Police said the suspects punched the victim repeatedly before running off.
The driver was left bruised with a swollen eye, but is expected to be fine.