New SEPTA Assault Numbers Show No Signs of Slowing Down
According to the most recent SEPTA numbers (which were prepared on Wednesday), assaults on operators show no signs of slowing down.
The numbers provided to Philadelphia Weekly show a total of 22 assaults between January 3rd, 2012 and April 7, 2012. In Wednesday’s print edition, we reported 12 assaults between early January and mid-February. The assaults range from passengers spitting and throwing cups of iced tea on the operators, to an operator having a gun pulled on him, to another being struck in the face and having his glasses broken. There were 91 assaults on SEPTA operators in 2011.
There have been a number of efforts taken to slow down or stop the increasing number of assaults on SEPTA operators in recent years. The only tactic most citywide officials can really agree on is state legislation that’d make it a first degree felony to assault an operator, which would lengthen the potential prison time and, thus, perhaps deter crime.
No such luck. The bill is stuck in the Senate Judiciary Committee in Harrisburg. And the head of the committee, Sen. Stewart Greenleaf, told us there’s essentially no hope to push it through, though did not elaborate.
As we blogged earlier this week, a lawmaker in New York has proposed giving subway operators tasers to help deter assaults in New York City, which are also increasing.
Other 2012 assaults on SEPTA officers, according to the report, include “Opr attacked by intoxicated female psgr. Popped off buttons on shirt.,” “Opr assaulted – cuts on face. Taken to Einstein by Medic 24,” “Rider tried to rob fem. cellp-assault.opr-taken to Elkins P.HP-threat Shoot,” “Opr said psgr pulled gun on him and said “Bang-Bang” several times,” and “Opr shoved & punch thrown by passenger that he blocked.”