A woman is alive after a man allegedly pushed her onto the subway tracks at Manhattan’s Union Square station on Thursday.
“It happened at 8:30 a.m. Thursday, and the 24-year-old suspect, who is said to be emotionally disturbed, can be seen watching and waiting for the train to arrive before he pushes the innocent victim,” ABC 7 reported.
Surveillance video posted online appeared to show the suspect rush up behind the woman just seconds before the train approached:
— Progressive Action (@progressiveact) November 19, 2020
Bystanders reacted in shock as the victim, who is in her 40s, hit the tracks. However, she was able to roll over just in time so the train made minimal contact.
“She fell, fortunately for her, between the roll bed and the rails,” said New York Police Department (NYPD) Transit Chief Kathleen O’Reilly.
The victim was conscious and alert when she was transported to Bellevue Hospital for treatment.
“Through the grace of God, [she] sustained minor injuries,” O’Reilly continued.
Watch as @NYPDTransit Chief O’Reilly briefs the media on an incident at Union Square in which a female was pushed on to the tracks as a train was pulling into the station. @FDNY helped the victim off the tracks, and our officers quickly made an arrest. pic.twitter.com/ajvHWVr5mr
— NYPD NEWS (@NYPDnews) November 19, 2020
A transit worker who witnessed the incident held the suspect, identified as Aditya Vemulapati, until police officers arrived.
“Vemulapati was taken to a hospital for evaluation and is charged with attempted murder, felony assault, and reckless endangerment,” the ABC article read.
Authorities said he is believed to be homeless.
“You could tell he was like, emotionally disturbed… mental health issues,” witness Andre Gunter told CBS New York.
After an individual was arrested in January for allegedly punching a 62-year-old man riding a southbound F train, New York City Transit interim President Sarah Feinberg stated “We’ve got a crisis in this city, and it absolutely has to be addressed.”
“It can’t just land in the transit system because we’re underground,” she added. Fienberg also criticized Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) and said riders need to feel safe, despite the pandemic.
“We cannot be a collection or a location where we just gather folks who are experiencing a mental health crisis,” she concluded.