Getting cops to look away from their iPhones is a big step toward subway safety

Getting cops to look away from their iPhones is a big step toward subway safety

Tech Highlights:

  • Mayor Eric Adams takes stage at Kings Theatre, reflects on his first 100 days in office. The mayor said he’s seeing situations like this far too often. “You see five transit officers standing at the booth looking at their phones. You just can’t continue to do that,” Adams said. “And so we are going to start taking very aggressive actions to make sure police are patrolling our subway system and not patrolling their iPhone.” He wants New Yorkers to tweet him photos of it and claimed he’ll go to the station the next day.

  • Two weeks have passed after the mass subway massacre in Brooklyn, and a man was shot and killed inside a Queens station on Monday. When Mayor Eric Adams gave his first state of the city address, he focused on subway safety. Lisa Rozner of CBS2 accompanied commuters on the train on Tuesday, and Adams shared some of their complaints. He’s dissatisfied with the way transit officers are deployed, and he’s asking New Yorkers to notify him if they spot cops on their phones.

“I think it’s a great enforcement. I barely see them,” said Kim Bonilla of Jamaica, Queens. “They’re usually just standing there talking to each other.” And that’s what Rozner saw a few hours later at the 34th Street station. Bonilla, who was heading home, gets off just one stop before the Jamaica Center/Parsons Boulevard station, where a man was fatally shot Monday afternoon following a dispute. “I was just very in shock and I was very scared, not just for me but for my family, my friends who also take transportation,” Bonilla said.

“That’s when you had an officer that rode the train from the first stop to the last stop. What it does is it presents a plausible deterrent,” said Darrin Porcher, a former NYPD Transit officer. Earlier, CBS2 saw people jumping the turnstile at the Jamaica Center station at around the same time the MTA announced a new panel will look at ways to approach fare evasion, a potential move Adams said he supports. “We’re going to identify those locations where you have rampant fare evasion and even if the choice is not to prosecute, we’re going to arrest,” Adams said.

But she said she has no choice but to take the train seven days a week to Manhattan for two different jobs. Mayor Eric Adams proposes new $99.7 million budget that includes an additional $200 million for NYPD. Angela Christensen travels between Dyker Heights and Herald Square every day for her job as a tour guide. “I rode the subway in the ’80s when it was more dangerous than it is now, but I felt safer because there was police on every train. Now, there are not,” Christensen said. And getting more cops on the trains is another priority for Adams, who rode the train as a cop.

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