Wake Up! NYPD says robbers are targeting subway sleepers

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NEW YORK (PIX11) -- Crime is down on the New York City subways but the latest statistics show a spike in robberies against sleeping riders.

In a monthly presentation from NYPD to the MTA Transit Committee, a deputy chief said officers have been focusing on the terminals, where many of the robberies have been reported -- especially in the overnight hours.

A recent arrest involved an officer monitoring the surveillance cameras at 42nd Street. A suspicious person appeared to be lingering near a napping rider. Officers were sent to the location and an arrest was made after stolen phones were located.

Some 21 percent of subway crime is connected to sleeping riders, according to NYPD Deputy Chief Vincent Coogan.

Officers are watching for these circumstances, among others, and advises riders to remain alert.

A check of the MTA Rules of Conduct reads, "No person on or in any facility or conveyance shall sleep or doze where such activity may be hazardous to such person or to others or may interfere with the operation of the Authority's transit system or the comfort of its passengers."

Stealing from other riders is illegal.

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