New York Daily News


Cops cracking down on farebeater­s, arrests skyrocket

- BYPETE DONOHUE With Angy Altamirano pdonohue@nydailynew­

ARRESTS FOR FARE-beating on buses is up 102% this year because of ramped-up enforcemen­t, Police Commission­er Ray Kelly said Monday.

Cops arrested 1,228 bus farebeater­s between Jan. 1 and June 24, authoritie­s said. Police arrested 609 people for boarding buses without paying during the same period last year, authoritie­s said.

MTA officials estimate bus farebeater­s deprive the authority of more than $50 million a year. Subway and bus fare evasions total ap- proximatel­y $100 million in losses, an MTA official said.

Based on the $1.63 average price of a trip, that is 61 million unpaid rides a year on buses and subways.

The Bronx has seen the brunt of the police crackdown. Cops in the borough have busted 992 bus farebeater­s this year — more than double the 412 arrested during the same time in 2011.

The next highest amount of arrests was in Manhattan, where 123 bus fare-evaders have been collared as of June 24, up from 75 for the same time a year earlier.

NYC Transit President Tom Prendergas­t said evasion rates vary around the city.

“We’re seeing the higher-end rates in Staten Island, where there’s a lot of school service and a lot of fare evasion may be students,” Prendergas­t said.

Cops have busted 60 bus fare-evaders this year in Staten Island; they nabbed a measly three during the same time a year earlier.

Students receive school-issued Metrocards, which provide three swipes daily, but they may evade fares to use the card later in the day, Prendergas­t said.

He said more studies needed to be done to determine the cause.

Helena Koudou, 16, said she sees students fare beat on the B14.

“If the bus is crowded a lot of people go through the back,” she said. “But now I don’t do it after my friend told me she got caught.”

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