Oct. 31 2019. By Shane O’Brien
Police arrested and tasered a youth at a Corona subway station last weekend– and the NYPD Transit has been criticized for its actions by State Sen. Jessica Ramos.
The NYPD said that officers tasered a 16-year-old after responding to reports of teens threatening each other with knives at the 111th Street ‘7’ station at about 8:30 p.m. on Sunday.
Witnesses, according to the NYPD, reported that the teens had knives and that they were engaged in a dispute.
However, in conflicting accounts, some say the 16-year-old was tasered and arrested for fare evasion.
Ramos took to Twitter to condemn the incident. She posted a tweet saying the teen was tasered because he didn’t pay the $2.75 fare to ride the subway.
“All of this for $2.75?!?! Leave my neighbors and every New Yorker Alone. We will never repair police and community relations this way,” the tweet read.
This incident was #SeenIn13 yesterday and I never want to see it again. All of this for $2.75?!?! Leave my neighbors and every New Yorker alone. We will never repair police and community relations this way. We’re not criminals. We’re just trying to get around. pic.twitter.com/ApKcgFVAkH
— Jessica Ramos (@jessicaramos) October 29, 2019
NYPD Transit responded to Ramos’ tweet with details of the arrest, yet its response was met with widespread skepticism from many of Ramos’ followers.
“You’ve done nothing to deserve the benefit of the doubt. We don’t believe you,” one Twitter user replied, while several others called for bodycam footage of the incident to be released.
You've done nothing to deserve the benefit of the doubt. We don't believe you, @NYPDTransit
— John Halpin (@bronxitenyc) October 30, 2019
The police, in their account of the incident, said that when they arrived at the scene there were three teens.
Two of the teens were stopped by the police, according to the NYPD, while the 16-year-old fled the scene. Police found a knife when searching one of the apprehended teens and charged him with menacing and criminal possession of a weapon. The other teen at the scene was not charged.
The teen that got away later returned to the scene where police say he resisted arrest and had to be restrained by taser. Police found a knife in the 16-year-old’s waistband and he was charged with counts of menacing, resisting arrest and criminal possession of a weapon.
Ramos released a statement calling for transit police to respond in a more measured manner.
“New Yorkers require amended systems of policing that better include holistic measures of transparency and accountability. Cognizant of the subway experience often felt by low-income areas and communities of color, it is critical to recognize the need to avoid over-policing MTA subway riders in our collaborative pursuit towards a safe environment for all,” Ramos said.