Straphangers throughout the city reported being the victim of creeps bumping, grinding, groping, flashing and assaulting them more than 3, times over a five-year period — and Grand Central Station is the epicenter of subway sleaze, an unprecedented Daily News analysis of subway crime data revealed.
Advertisement The NYPD recorded misdemeanor sex crimes and eight felony sex crimes at the century-old transit hub, or on trains approaching it, from July through June — the highest reported tally for sex crimes at any station in the system during that time. It also made misdemeanor sex crimes the most prevalent category of crime at Grand Central over those five years. And since sex crimes have historically been drastically underreported, that's just the tip of the iceberg.
The News found that nearly half of all forcible touching incidents in the subway occurred on the Lexington Ave. An offense committed on a moving train is attributed, under NYPD statistical procedures, to the next stop on the line. Gropers, in particular, seek crowded places like subway cars or platforms that provide them with plenty of targets and the ability to shield their movements.
And the Lexington Ave. Several women interviewed by The News said they were victimized by touchy riders while on the subway, but were unable to identify the perpetrator because of sardine-can-like conditions on the train.
For some creeps, the sick come-ons are a regular part of their commute. One twisted taxi driver even used the subways to satisfy his disgusting urges during breaks from work, Dones said. Advertisement "He would park his cab, go in the subway, and then go back to the cab and work," Dones said. Gropers often operate much like pickpockets.
Looking for potential victims, they like to step out of a subway car when it arrives at a station and then reenter it after a new wave of riders has entered from the platform. Sometimes, they'll do what cops call "looping" — riding line segments back and forth.
The second most prevalent sex crime in the subways during the analysis period was public lewdness — when a person exposes their privates. There were 1, reports of flashers in the subway system, and, unlike gropers, who seem to prefer busy rush hours, the incidents were evenly spread throughout the day — so there's no predicting when a flasher is most likely to strike. They just take out their private part and expose it. The flasher is a psychologically and sexually immature person who has difficulty with relationships, said N.
Berrill, a clinical psychologist and executive at New York Forensic Mental Health, which treats sex offenders. In some ways, it's a very primitive and infantile behavior.
It's also very aggressive. It's kind of a sad and in some ways pathetic situation. I'm not the strongest person, and I don't want to be aggressively attacked," she said. She said that during a subway ride a few years ago, she was groped and called out the pervert. Another male rider who witnessed the abuse also berated the abuser.
The most serious sex crimes tend to happen when the system is practically empty. All but three of the 20 rapes reported during the analysis period happened between 10 p. Between and , there were fewer than three rapes reported each year on average. But in , straphangers reported three rapes and seven attempted rapes — including two incidents at Broadway Junction in Brooklyn, said an NYPD official.
Five attempted rapes were reported last year, and cops have arrested suspects in eight of the 15 incidents, the official said.
Advertisement There have been five rapes or attempted rapes reported so far this year. But Emily May, executive director and founder of Hollaback!