On any given late-night, young adults are sneaking-up, robbing, and hurting riders of a Morris Park train station.
The #5 train station, located on the corner of Paulding and Esplanade avenues, has become a new hot-spot for robberies over the last six weeks and the 49th Precinct is keeping a close-eye on the late-night activity.
According to precinct Deputy Inspector Kevin Nicholson, the suspects are between the ages of 15 and 19, and are reportedly hiding-out in nearby apartments, awaiting their next targets.
Since mid-March, three incidents have occurred near the train station and although names of victims have not been released, Nicholson says the victims were robbed and injured.
The suspects wait for train users to leave the station between midnight and 6 a.m. and attack them from behind, robbing them of their personal belongings.
“Incidents like this have happened before at this train station, but it has become more common than ever recently,” Nicholson said. “We have placed officers at the station during the times of the robberies and additional officers around the area to monitor people leaving the station.”
On Friday, April 8 at approximately 3:49 a.m., officers caught 19-year-old Tony Coxum allegedlyattempting to rob a resident two blocks away from the station after officers had recently saw the person leave the station.
Coxum is still in custody and has been indicted. It has not been confirmed how many suspects are involved in the robberies, however, the MO of the suspects seems to be that they hang-out and either consume alcohol and or smoke marijuana prior to the robbery.
The train station has been known as a prime location for criminal suspects to get away after a robbery by either fleeing via the staircase next to the station on Esplanade Avenue, leading down to Lydig Avenue, or by hopping on an incoming train.
The Morris Park Community Association Patrol has joined the 49th Precinct in increasing neighborhood runs around the station. MPCA president Al D’Angelo plans to increase the awareness of possibilities of robberies around the community.
Residents around the station are urged to call 911 should they see anything suspicious.