MTAPD and NYPD Roll Out Joint Patrol Initiative at Subway Stations Located at Commuter Rail Hubs
Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) Chair and CEO Janno Lieber today toured Grand Central subway station with police officials to see the new collaborative safety efforts being made by both the NYPD and MTAPD. Last week, the MTAPD and NYPD rolled out a soft launch of a patrol initiative at subway stations located at commuter rail hubs Grand Central Terminal, Penn Station, Jamaica Station and Barclays Center-Atlantic Terminal.
“We have dramatically increased police presence in the system - and communication about that presence to our riders,” said Chair Lieber. “Arrests are up, fare evasion enforcement is up and - a positive sign - ridership continues to grow.”
The objective of the joint strategy is to improve the safety of the subway system given recent crimes that have impacted the city above and below ground. The joint strategy, announced on Oct. 22, includes the NYPD is surging 1,200 officer shifts a day into the subway system, the MTA installing cameras in subway cars, and the State providing additional services to get New Yorkers experiencing severe mental illness out of the subway system and into treatment programs.
This past the weekend, the new strategy resulted in officers seizing a firearm at Grand Central following a physical dispute on the mezzanine level. In addition to the gun seizure, MTAPD wrote 57 fare evasion summonses at Grand Central, plus another eight at Penn Station. These summonses complement the over 1,500 summonses the NYPD wrote systemwide last week.
The new joint effort follows actions already taken by the MTA and NYPD to increase safety within the subway system. In addition to the MTAPD’s new jurisdiction in rail hub subway stations, the NYPD has already increased patrols inside trains and on platforms, with train conductors announcing when an officer is present on the platform or on board a train. To help deter fare evasion, the Authority has also deployed unarmed guards at fare payment areas in stations.