Brooklyn community upset NYPD officer punched teenagers in subway station melee

BROOKLYN — An NYPD officer seen on camera punching teenagers during a melee in a Brooklyn subway station remained on duty Monday.

Sebastien Antoine, 16, said he was in the Jay Street-Metro Tech station watching the fight Friday afternoon.

"I was across the platform watching everything occur," he said.

Antoine said his 15-year-old friend Benjamin was punched by a police officer.

"He tried to walk from the altercation that had nothing to do with him," Antoine said.

The NYPD said two groups of teens were fighting Friday afternoon in Downtown Brooklyn when it spilled down into the subway station. Cops from the 84th precinct followed. The ensuing chaos, captured on camera, shows one police officer throwing punches. The 15-year-old is also seen punching back.

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, a former police officer, said, "I believe the police department should have immediately placed on modified assignment,"

The NYPD said the video does not show the whole incident. In a statement, the NYPD said, "Officers responded to a fight between two large groups, during which individuals began to interfere with police action and the situation escalated. Publicly available video does not show the entirety of the incident, and the department is conducting a review."

In another statement, the NYPD said, "We have determined that while the review of this incident is ongoing, the officer will be placed in a non-enforcement assignment. Importantly, in any situation — and particularly on subway platforms which are inherently dangerous places because of proximity to the tracks and moving trains— for the safety of all New Yorkers, people must not interfere with police activity, and comply with police directives."

The Brooklyn District Attorney's office said it is reviewing the incident.

Five of the teenagers were arrested Friday, including the 15-year-old whose friends spoke out Monday. He is facing multiple charges, including assault on a police officer.

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