To all the ladies who stand alone on a subway platform late at night, hoping that being within eyeshot of a station agent will make you somewhat safer from harm: You’re wrong.
MTA employees have no responsibly to intervene if you happen to be attacked and raped right in front of them, a Queens judge effectively ruled on Tuesday when he threw out a lawsuit brought against the MTA, and a station agent and train conductor who witnessed a rape in the 21st St. G train station in June 2005.
Justice Kevin Kerrigan ruled that the conductor, Harmodio Cruz, and station agent, John Koort, took “prompt and decisive action” in summoning the police. The police did not arrive in time, however, to prevent the then-21-year-old victim from being raped twice after being dragged kicking and screaming past the station agent’s booth as he watched. Her attacker escaped and has never been caught.
The victim called the decision “deplorable” today, and her lawyer Marc Albert told the Voice that they planned to appeal.
Here’s the MTA’s statement: “It is important to note that while NYC Transit workers are trained to the highest degree of professionalism in their assigned jobs, they are not and should not be expected to perform in the capacity of law enforcement officers.” They added that “incidents of crime in the subways remain at historic lows.”
Photo (cc) wka.