Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Homeless man charged in subway pushing death

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NEW YORK -- A homeless man was arrested Wednesday in the death of a subway rider who was pushed onto the tracks and photographed just before a train struck him.

Naeem Davis, 30, was taken into custody for questioning Tuesday after security video showed a man fitting the suspect's description working with street vendors near Rockefeller Center. Police said Davis made statements implicating himself in Ki-Suck Han's death.

Davis was arrested on a second-degree murder charge. He was in custody, and it wasn't immediately clear if he had a lawyer. It also wasn't clear when he would appear in court. He has several prior arrests in New York and Pennsylvania on mostly minor charges including drug possession.

Witnesses told investigators they saw a man talking to himself Monday afternoon before he approached the 58-year-old Han of Queens at the Times Square station, got into an altercation with him and pushed him into the train's path.

The New York Post published a photo on its front page Tuesday of Han with his head turned toward the train, his arms reaching up but unable to climb off the tracks in time. It was shot by freelance photographer R. Umar Abbasi, who was waiting to catch a train.

Abbasi told NBC's Today show Wednesday he was trying to alert the motorman to what was going on by flashing his camera. He said he was shocked people nearer to the victim didn't try to help in the 22 seconds before the train struck.

"It took me a second to figure out what was happening... I saw the lights in the distance. My mind was to alert the train," Abbasi said.

In a written account Abbasi gave the Post, he said a crowd took videos and snapped photos on their cellphones after Han was pulled, limp, onto the platform. He said he shoved them back as a doctor and another man tried to resuscitate the victim, but it was no use.

-- The Associated Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition December 6, 2012 A18

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