The New York Post:
Authorities predicted months ago that the homeless man who allegedly shoved a straphanger onto Manhattan subway tracks would become a serial subway menace, The Post has learned.
Law enforcement had told another subway-attack victim — a retired postal worker who was allegedly slugged in the face on an F train in Chelsea by Justin Pena on Jan. 16 — that the unhinged shelter resident would soon be back out on the street, free to terrorize again.
“They told us he’s going to get a slap on the wrist and be back on the street and do the exact same thing,” victim Anthony Lion’s son Herman Leung recalled. “It’s very upsetting.”
Ten months later, the prediction came true, police now say.
Pena, 23, allegedly sucker-punched a 36-year-old stranger multiple times on a platform of the 42nd Street-Bryant Park, and then shoved the randomly targeted man onto the tracks.
That victim was able to pull himself back onto the platform before a train arrived; he suffered only minor injuries to his knee and hands, becoming the latest in a spate of attacks on subway passengers by violent, mentally ill men.
In the nearly year-long stretch between allegedly beating up Lion, 73, and shoving the younger man to the tracks, Pena has cycled in and out of Bellevue, his mother’s home and the streets.