Assault a Transit Employee and You WILL Go to Jail

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An attack on any one of our workers is an attack on all of us, and the MTA is fully committed to protecting our employees.  To maintain this commitment, MTA New York City Transit’s Department of Security has dedicated staff charged with tracking all employee assaults, from the initial incident through full adjudication. 

In all cases, we continuously interface with the NYPD and the five District Attorney’s offices to ensure all is done to locate and arrest those who assault our employees, and make certain that they are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.  This week there is good news to report on that front.

Steangeli Medina, 19, was sentenced to six months in jail for beating a bus operator who wouldn't let her bring a dog on board a Bx. 9 bus in the Bronx – a violation of NYC Transit rules of conduct.  She was also sentenced to five years of probation, a mandatory anger management training/counseling program, and an eight-year order of protection barring her from going anywhere near the Bus Operator/victim. 

Medina admitted in a Bronx court that she attacked a bus operator after the operator refused to let her on the bus with the Chihuahua she had tucked in her jacket.  Only service or seeing-eye dogs are allowed on a bus without a carrier.

Medina flew into a bitter rage, punching and then dragging the operator off the bus and onto the sidewalk where she continued the vicious assault.  The incident left the bus operator with injuries and trauma, including partial vision loss and surgery to her knees and shoulders.  Medina is scheduled to surrender December 12.

This incident occurred almost two and a half years ago, but the MTA continued to follow the case, kept it from falling off the radar, and worked through the criminal justice system to ensure the perpetrator paid for her crime.

The MTA has also established Transit Watch to address an increase in the number of assaults on MTA personnel. Transit Watch, which provides a monetary reward,  puts criminals on notice that if they assault a bus or subway employee, everyone who sees it happen is going to help put them in jail.  Customers who see a crime take place are asked to call the NYPD’s CrimeStoppers hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS. All calls are kept strictly confidential, and you need not provide your name.

Assaulting an MTA employee is a Class D felony punishable by up to seven years in prison.