MTA cameras were also busted in these subway attacks
Two victims of horrific subway violence say MTA cameras weren’t working during their attacks.
Faulty surveillance cameras at Brooklyn stations this week hampered cops’ manhunt for Frank James, the suspected Brooklyn subway shooter, sources told the Post.
The MTA has since the attack resisted requests to provide a full account of its surveillance system, which is supposed to provide live feeds from 5,100 cameras at the NYPD, with another 5,000 cameras making recordings.
But Chris Anguisaca, who was stabbed in the eye by a crazed man on an A train on Feb. 14, said cops told him the subway cameras weren’t working north of 190th Street.
Anguisaca, 19, was returning home to Upper Manhattan from working at an Amazon fulfillment center in New Jersey around 6 a.m. when he saw a man approach him and a friend throw him insults and call him “Mexican”.
The trio began to fight and the attacker punched Anguisaca in the face and pulled out “half a chisel”, the victim recalled.
“At first he tried to put it down my throat. He tried to kill me,” he said.
The man stabbed him in the left eye and then fled as the train entered the 203rd Street station. Anguisaca remained blind in the eyes.
“It’s crazy,” Anguisaca said of this week’s subway attack. “There should be cameras, especially in the station.”
The NYPD said the investigation into the Anguisaca attack was ongoing but would not comment on cameras at that station.
Rebecca Lamorte, 30, a disability activist and former candidate for City Council, said she was assaulted twice on the subway – and both times authorities said the cameras were out of order.
In 2013, she said, she was getting off the 6 train at 51st Street when — “a woman pushed me.”
“I thought I was putting my left leg on the platform and it was the space, in fact, between the train and the platform. my leg went in, it got crushed between the train and the platform,” she told the Post.
The next morning, she couldn’t walk. The nerves in her left leg are now “completely destroyed”, causing her daily pain and requiring her to walk with a cane, she said.
“I wanted camera footage. I was told that the cameras didn’t work there. Either they are broken or there is no tape to record anything,” she said. “I want to know what happened to me. … My life is shaped forever from this moment.
In 2015, on a 4/5 train from downtown, “a man chose to masturbate on me,” says Lamorte.
She was wearing crutches and a splint, and wonders if the pervert had singled her out as an easy target.
Again, no pictures.
“I went to the transport police. … I asked for cameras,” she said. “I was told again, ‘Oh no, there are no cameras.’ The office didn’t even have to deal with it.
“Our tax dollars paid to put cameras there, but they’re not being used,” she said.
NYPD Assistant Commissioner for Intelligence and Counterterrorism John Miller played down the role of faulty cameras in the investigation to find James after Tuesday’s attack, saying the MTA provided footage from other stations .
Members of the city council on Thursday demanded a full audit of the system.
A 2019 audit by state comptroller Tom DiNapoli found that the New York City Transit division had failed to perform required preventative maintenance on its security system.
And when problems were identified, repairs were not “timely”, the audit said.
During the 2019 audit, there were 9,920 CCTV cameras and 334 digital video recorders throughout the system.
DiNapoli said in a statement that “necessary time was lost” due to this week’s camera system failure.
“The MTA has work to do to make sure riders feel safe. At a minimum, this means making sure existing security measures are working. New Yorkers are resilient and will persevere, but they deserve the peace of mind that comes from a public transit system that puts their safety first,” DiNapoli said in a statement.