Straphangers like Rocket Clayman are now making their own statements about this kind of intervention.
"I think that we need stronger gun control across the board in this country. So I certainly would not be in favor of somebody firing a shot," Clayman said.
Authorities say Tuesday night inside the N-R-W subway station at West 49th and 7th Avenue, a panhandler had opened the emergency gate and threatened to steal the purse of a woman if she didn't give him money.
According to police, Rote told officers he was watching and pulled out a gun he was carrying and fired warning shots in an attempt to stop the mugging.
71-year-old Hell’s Kitchen resident Percy Palmer is supportive of Rote’s alleged actions.
"I don't think it was too much, though, because you don't know what that person had that's attacking that woman instead of asking her, may I have a dollar or something like that," Palmer said.
No injuries were reported. After firing the shots, police say Rote took off and was eventually being taken into custody Wednesday.
Police also arrested the alleged panhandler whom they say is well known to them. He has been identified as 49-year-old Matthew Roesch.
Both the NYPD and the MTA do not condone what some are calling vigilantism.
Police say John Rote has no prior criminal history.
He was arraigned Thursday on charges including criminal possession of a weapon and menacing.
The Judge set bail at $10,000 cash.