MTA Worker Attacked Teen, Accusing Her of Farebeating: Mom, Lawyer - NBC New York

MTA Worker Attacked Teen, Accusing Her of Farebeating: Mom, Lawyer

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    MTA Employee Accused of Attacking Teen

    An MTA employee is facing charges after he was allegedly caught on camera attacking a teenager. Ida Siegal reports.

    (Published Monday, May 14, 2018)

    What to Know

    • Security video shows an MTA worker grabbing a teenage girl by the neck as he accused her of trying to beat the subway fare

    • The girl's mother and attorney says the teen had never gotten the school-issued student MetroCard she was supposed to get that day

    • The MTA says the worker has been suspended; the worker's lawyer says the girl was trying to beat the fare

    The mother of a 13-year-old girl says her daughter is still traumatized after an MTA employee shoved her out of a Brooklyn subway station while accusing her of trying to beat the fare. 

    At their attorney's office Monday afternoon, Herkema Powell said her daughter, Anaila Muhammad, has not been able to return to school or ride the train since the incident in March.

    "She's really scared," she said. "I was totally outraged." 

    Muhammad was trying to get home from the Fourth Avenue subway station, her mother said, and didn't have the newest school-issued MetroCard that her school was supposed to hand out that day. 

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    One worker let Muhammad through without it, but when the train broke down, everyone had to get off and switch to another station. That's when worker Rida Elzeck told her she couldn't get through. 

    Security video showed the worker grabbing Muhammad by the neck and pulling her through the gate. 

    Powell said police didn't believe her daughter initially and held her in handcuffs -- but when they saw the video, they released her and placed Elzeck under arrest. 

    "They falsely arrested this 13-year-old, kept her handcuffed for three hours, threatening her with assault charges," said attorney Scott Rynecki. 

    Eventually, "They allowed this young child who was crying and in pain to be released to her mother," he said. 

    An attorney for Elzeck said his client did nothing wrong, and maintained that Muhammad was trying to beat the fare. He said his client went to the hospital with a bloody nose after the scuffle.

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    The MTA said Elzeck has been suspended from his job but was offering no further comment. 

    Muhammad's mother said of Elzeck: "I want him prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law." 

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