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NYC straphanger shoots ‘aggressive’ rider in head after wrestling gun away from him during fight: cops

A fight aboard a packed Brooklyn train Thursday afternoon took a horrific turn when one straphanger wrestled a gun away from an apparent agitator and shot him in the head, police said.

The violence on the rush-hour northbound A train erupted when a 32-year-old man was confronted by an “aggressive” 36-year-old rider after boarding at the Nostrand Avenue subway station at 4:45 p.m., NYPD Chief Michael Kemper said at a press conference.

“I’ll beat you up!” the alleged aggressor barked before hurling curses and trying to provoke the man to fight, according to footage obtained by The Post.

“Come on, there’s babies on here!” one woman can be heard pleading.

But that didn’t stop the 36-year-old, who pounced on the other man, pushing him onto a two-seater and delivering several blows.

Straphangers huddled in fear after chaos broke out. @JoyceMeetsWorld/X
Straphangers huddled in fear after chaos broke out. @JoyceMeetsWorld/X
Straphangers hoped the situation wouldn’t escalate, according to a journalist on the scene. @JoyceMeetsWorld/X-ABC
Straphangers hoped the situation wouldn’t escalate, according to a journalist on the scene. @JoyceMeetsWorld/X-ABC
Passengers prayed and ducked for cover in the moments after the shooting. @JoyceMeetsWorld/X-ABC
Passengers prayed and ducked for cover in the moments after the shooting. @JoyceMeetsWorld/X-ABC

During the clash, the alleged aggressor, wearing all black, flashed what’s believed to be a knife or razor before digging through his jacket and eventually pulling out a gun, according to Kemper.

The train car erupted into screams and the straphangers rushed to the opposite end, with several throwing themselves on the floor, according to the harrowing video.

Violence on a rush-hour northbound A train erupted on Thursday.
Violence on a rush-hour northbound A train erupted on Thursday.

“Let me out!” one woman screamed repeatedly.

The chaos ensued at the Hoyt-Schermerhorn station. Peter Gerber
The chaos ensued at the Hoyt-Schermerhorn station. Peter Gerber

The 32-year-old managed to yank the gun away from the other brawler and he “fired multiple shots,” striking the other man in front of dozens of commuters, Kemper said.

At least four shots were heard on the footage.

The train doors opened as gunshots rang out and panicked commuters bolted outside into the A/C Hoyt–Schermerhorn station — which houses the NYPD’s 30th Transit Precinct, video shows.

William C Lopez/New York Post
William C Lopez/New York Post

Officers with their guns drawn flooded the car, witnesses said, and the shooter was arrested before he even stepped onto the platform, Kemper said.

The 36-year-old man was rushed to Brooklyn Methodist Hospital in critical condition and was undergoing surgery.

Police believe the two men were total strangers.

It is not clear whether the shooter will face any charges, with police stating that the “victim appears to be the aggressor.”

A man was shot in the head on a Brooklyn subway platform, according to police sources. Peter Gerber
A man was shot in the head on a Brooklyn subway platform, according to police sources. Peter Gerber

ABC journalist Joyce Philippe was riding the train, in a different car, when the mayhem unfolded.

Philippe posted a separate video on social media showing terrified straphangers ducking for cover in the moments after the shooting.

“Where’s the NYPD? Oh, my God!” one woman exclaims in the clip. “Close the door! Close the door!” others pleaded.

“People were crying, praying, huddled amongst each other …,” Phillipe told The Post. “It was a very fearful moment.”

City officials blasted Thursday’s subway violence, which comes as shootings underground have skyrocketed.

The shooting took place during the afternoon rush hour. Peter Gerber
The shooting took place during the afternoon rush hour. Peter Gerber

“When you bring a gun on a train and you start a fight, it’s not right and it’s absolutely outrageous,” Kemper said.

MTA Chair and CEO Janno Lieber said the real victims of the incident were the other commuters who feared for their lives.

“Get rid of the guns!” Lieber fumed. “When a gun’s involved, we can’t live with it.”

“When something like this happens. When you bring a gun on the train and you start a fight, it’s just not right. It’s absolutely outrageous … They’re just trying to go about their lives, so get rid of the guns!”

A source told The Post that the subway car from Thursday’s shooting was “covered with blood and ballistics” when police arrived.

A small-caliber firearm was recovered from the scene, police said.

The shooting comes just over a week after Gov. Kathy Hochul announced she was sending hundreds of National Guard and state police into the subways to help with bag checks as a way to curb transit crime.

But no guardsmen were at the Hoyt–Schermerhorn station Thursday, sources said, leaving some locals puzzled.

“I thought they were bringing in the National Guard and extra to stop these kinds of things from happening. If they can’t stop it, who can?” a frustrated Zara Jones, 24, asked.

“Why are shootings on the subway becoming a regular occurrence? There’s too many guns and too many people willing to use them indiscriminately. It makes me sick,” said Jones.

From the beginning of the year through this Sunday, there have been eight shooting victims in the Big Apple transit system — up 700% from the same time period last year, according to police data.

At least three have been killed.

Police have made 17 gun arrests on the subways so far this year, compared to eight last year during the same time period — an 112.5% increase, the stats show.

Additional reporting by Katherine Donlevy, Nolan Hicks and Patrick Reilly