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Police searching for 3 people after subway rider killed in the Bronx

Crime in NYC transit up 18% so far this year compared to last year
Crime in NYC transit up 18% so far this year compared to last year 03:10

NEW YORK - Police have released images of three suspects they're looking for in Friday's deadly subway attack in the Bronx. 

They say a fight ended with a man dead. 

It's the second deadly subway incident to happen in the Bronx in the past 11 days. On Feb. 12, there was a shooting at the Mount Eden station that killed one person and injured five others

Police say Friday's incident all started with an argument on a southbound D train as it approached the 182nd Street Station around 5 a.m. That argument turned physical, and then deadly.

Detectives say three people joined a fight against 45-year-old William Alvarez on the train.

Someone in the group either stabbed or shot Alvarez. Police say it's unclear from the deadly wound.

"The injury sustained to our victim is consistent with either a gunshot wound or a puncture wound from a sharp object," NYPD Chief of Transit Michael Kemper said.

First responders carried the victim away in a stretcher, and some riders witnessed a chaotic scene, including one man who said he was waiting for a train. 

"I was totally, totally shocked. Like, people were screaming at that time, so I go back. I skip that one," he said. 

MTA, police officials discuss deadly incident on Bronx subway 17:03

Investigators said all three of the suspects got on the train at the Fordham Road stop. One of them sat down next to the victim, and they exchanged words. Then they both stood up and started fighting.

The NYPD shared a message for that suspect and the other two who joined the attack. 

"Turn yourself in, because we have the greatest detectives in the world looking for you, and you just don't have a chance," NYPD Deputy Commissioner Public Information Tarik Sheppard said. 

"We're going to catch these guys," Mayor Eric Adams said a few hours after the fatal incident. 

Police say they are also searching for another man after a separate attack last week at the Queens Plaza subway station, and they're searching for a woman who struck a man in the head last week at the Herald Square station.

Hours after the deadly attack and a few blocks away, a woman's routine bus ride to go visit her brother ended with her getting slashed in the face by a complete stranger.

The 33-year-old victim told CBS New York a man started groping her on a Bx2 bus, so she asked the driver to pull over on Grand Concourse near East 175th Street. Police say the man then attacked the woman, slashing her across the face. He then ran off.

The uptick in crimes on buses and trains compared to this time last year is a major concerns for riders.

"Listen, anytime there's an event like this New Yorkers are alarmed. The subway is a place that everybody in New York depends on, it's got to be safe, it's got to feel safe, even if you're traveling in the middle of the night like this when this incident occurred. So we have to push back against gun violence across the city," MTA Chair Janno Lieber said.   

"Why do you think it is that transit crime is up 18% compared to last year, and what is being done to stop that?" CBS New York's Tim McNicholas asked. 

"It was significantly up in January, but immediately the NYPD and Mayor Adams surged cops into the system, and anybody who's been riding the last couple weeks knows there are a lot more cops in the system," Lieber said. 

Watch Tim McNicholas' report

3 people sought for deadly subway attack 03:06

"We recognize people's concerns. Trust me, we do. It concerns us also," Kemper said.

Kemper says after a violent start to the year, the NYPD put over 1,000 additional officers in the subway system each day, which the MTA asserts is working.

"And already in February, overall crime is down now today. We're not going to tell New Yorkers don't be concerned when there's a shooting, but overall crime, the trajectory is crime is down versus last year in the month of February," Lieber said.

Transit police say over those last couple weeks, crime has begun to drop -- a trend they hope continues as the MTA installs more cameras in trains. Officials said the incident was caught on surveillance video in the subway. Thus far, there are 1,000 cameras in subway cars, and the entire fleet will have them by January of next year, according to the MTA. 

"Every car in the subway system is gonna have a camera in it, and in this case it paid off," Lieber said. 

"Forty percent of our crimes are taking place on the trains. With the new video technology on the train, it's easier to identify when things happen. So we're going to zero in," Adams said. 

CBS New York's data team has looked into reports of violence at subway stations across the city. This attack happened at East 182nd Street and Grand Concourse, where there have been at least five felony assaults since 2018, three of them last year alone.

Police are investigating the motive and whether the suspects knew the victim.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call the NYPD's Crime Stoppers hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477), or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). You can also submit a tip via their website or via DM on Twitter, @NYPDTips. All calls are kept confidential.    

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