Suspect arraigned after latest subway slashing at station in Brooklyn

Darla Miles Image
Tuesday, February 2, 2016
Suspect arraigned after latest subway slashing at Brooklyn station
Darla Miles is live in Brooklyn with the latest details.

BROWNSVILLE, Brooklyn (WABC) -- A man was arraigned Tuesday morning in New York City's latest subway slashing, this one at a station in Brooklyn.

Police say a mentally disturbed man picked a fight with a passenger and then slashed him in the face.

The 30-year-old victim was waiting for a train at the Pennsylvania Ave./Livonia Ave. subway station in Brownsville Monday afternoon when 37-year-old Stephen Brathwaite, pacing back and forth, started staring at him, authorities say.

The victim asked what he was staring at and Brathwaite allegedly threw coffee on his back, asking "Wanna fight?".

The two got onto separate subway cars, but according to investigators, Brathwaite was soon back in his victim's face and lunged at him with his folding knife, cutting the right side of the man's face on his chin.

Brathwaite, who police say suffers from schizophrenia, was arrested at the Crown Heights/Utica Ave. station.

The victim sustained a minor injury.

There have been at least six previous slashings in the city's subways this year.

Police Commissioner William Bratton has said he wants to look into banning repeat offenders from the subway.

But some straphangers don't think that's the problem.

"Too many of them are being put on the street because they're trying to alleviate their system," said Omarsha Christian of East New York.

"We need to put more money toward the mental illness and helping the people, and when you see people like this that's going around and slashing people, that's a cry for help," said Able Jackson of Mott Haven.