The District Attorney's office is charging an MTA officer with beating a homeless man outside of Penn Station in January. Officer Michael Koenig and two other officers had ejected homeless Maurice Cherry from Penn Station around 3AM, and then beat him. Two people waiting to catch a cab witnessed the beating and reported it to Amtrak and the MTA. Newsday reports ADA Andrew Heffner as saying, "There was absolutely no justification for this assault. According to the eyewitnesses, the victim was doing nothing at the time and went into a fetal position when the officer assaulted him." Koenig and other MTA officers are also charged with falsifying records for not recording the incident. Koenig's lawyer says the charges seem weak.
Homelessness is a huge issue in the city. They are the unspoken population, and the Mayor's policies dealing with them were recently questioned in the weeks leading up the Republican National Convention (with reports of "moving the homeless" from the Madison Square Garden area). We can expect more talk about what the Mayor has done to help the homeless next year, as the Mayoral elections loom. Here's the City's Department of Homeless Services, as well as information from the Coalition for the Homeless