NYC subway stories: New Yorkers share their experiences

Usually when FOX 5 NY reports on the subway system, it's about something major that has happened, and the police have been called in. 

Acknowledging that, we set out to hear the subway stories from New Yorkers, asking them to share uncomfortable encounters that might not rise to the level of calling police, but still have had a profound impact on their lives. 

On a Wednesday afternoon, we met Sam at the Myrtle-Wyckoff station in Bushwick Brooklyn.

"I feel like every night I see something, right? " Sam said without hesitation, "every single night, like, those stations, they're like, it's really difficult to feel safe. No matter. No matter if nothing is happening. Like, you know, eventually something is going to happen.

New York Police Department (NYPD) officers patrol inside a subway station Photographer: Stephanie Keith/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Sam’s Times Square station, which he says he uses to get to and from work, was in the headlines last year when Michelle Go was shoved to her death onto the tracks of an oncoming train. Her murder, exacerbated by the fact that, in her life, she dedicated her free time to those in need, just like the man who was arrested for killing her. 

Danger in the subway system is always on Sam's mind, he says. And often, it gets very real.

"Oh, my God. That was like two weeks ago. I was in the old train under the bridge going from Bedford [avenue] to First Avenue. And somebody started screaming like, 'Got off the train! Right now! Get off the train! Get off the train!' And it was like this huge pile of people running into everybody."

Women who ride the subways speak another form of criminality. 

Anahi echoes a complaint we often hear.

Commuters wait on the platform at the Times Square subway station. Photographer: Stephanie Keith/Bloomberg via Getty Images

"I actually have been. What's that word? Molested." She told us, "One day I was going on my way to work again and walking up the stairs, a man came and tried to give my grab my behind. And that is, as a woman, as you say, it's very uncomfortable to be dealing with that type of situation."

From sexual harassment to assault to murders cases, we report on instances the NYPD investigates. NYPD data shows a 25% decline in stabbings in the subways this year, a decline aided in part by changes that include the city adding additional patrol officers into the system. 

But the simple truth is that countless New Yorkers who run into bad situations don't call 9-1-1. 

That includes both Sam and Anahi.

"No, like never." Sam says, "And not because I don't think they're needed. I just don't think the response is going to be quick enough, or I just think it's more like I just look down and wait because eventually it's going to be over."

Anahi adds, "No because honestly, I don't want anyone, because they're not going to be as on top of the situation as they should be. They're going to give you a rundown, make you write a report, and they're going to check on you. They never check on you. So, I don't feel like there's a point."