Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) Chair and CEO Janno Lieber and MTA police officers today joined Mayor Eric Adams, New York City Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell, other law enforcement officials and Jewish community leaders at City Hall to discuss coordinated efforts that averted a potential attack on the Jewish community in New York City this past weekend.
MTA police officers Ryan Fackner and Conor Colasurdo were recognized at City Hall by Mayor Adams and MTA Chair and CEO Lieber for their work in a coordinated effort among law enforcement agencies that led to the arrest of two terror suspects at Penn Station. Officers Fackner and Colasurdo apprehended the two suspects after one was flagged for making antisemitic and threatening posts online, including references to perpetrate an armed attack on a synagogue. Mayor Adams noted law enforcement officers recovered weapons including a semi-automatic firearm, a ghost gun with an extended magazine, a large hunting knife, and a Nazi armband.
“My father came to this country in 1941 as a refugee from Nazis and then lost his mother, my grandmother, and other relatives in the Holocaust. So, you can imagine my reaction when I heard from City Hall that there were people with swastika armbands using the MTA transit system," said MTA Chair and CEO Lieber. “Attacks like the one planned by these two men are particularly repugnant. Hatred and violence based on religion and race have no place in New York or the transit system.”
“This was not an idle threat. This was a real threat,” said Mayor Adams. “Hatred and antisemitism will not take foothold in our city. No one should feel threatened walking down the street or traveling on the subway. We are going to fight the rise in antisemitism and extremism and continue to support our law enforcement communities and thank all that were involved.”
“I want to thank the many law enforcement partners for their assistance in this matter, and to helping to quickly ensure that the safety of our city was preserved,” said FBI Assistant Director in Charge of the New York Field Office Michael J. Driscoll. “I also want to highlight the outstanding work by the MTA Police in support of this case.”
“I want to acknowledge the incredible work of NYPD, the FBI, MTA, and our own community security initiative," said United Jewish Association-Federation of New York CEO Eric Goldstein. “Thanks to their collective expertise, commitment, and cooperation, what might have been the next Pittsburgh or Poway synagogue massacre was averted.”
Officers Fackner and Colasurdo joined the MTA Police Department at the same time, both having nearly three years of service.