Two incidents over the past week signal a nationwide crackdown on snacks trafficking months in the making.
Hungry to thwart potential criminals where they are most vulnerable — consuming the calories necessary to fuel their crimes — law enforcement kicked off a coast-to-coast crackdown last Monday arresting a San Francisco BART rider over a breakfast sandwich. This incident was followed by the weekend arrest of a churro vendor in NYC.
Plans to remove such hungry offenders for minor transit code violations have been building since this summer.
In June, BART announced “$2.1 million towards 19 additional police officers” responsible for “addressing Quality of Life challenges in the areas of safety, fare evasion prevention, cleanliness and homelessness.”
Four days layer, New York Governor Mario Cuomo announced 500 additional police officers deployed “to one hundred targeted locations—50 subway stations, 50 bus routes” aimed at “helping public safety… reducing fare evasion and protecting MTA workers.”
Despite the MTA’s own Inspector General questioning the numbers used to justify the resources dedicated to anti-fare-evasion efforts in the NYC subway, the increased police presence has rocked both cities. Citizens have been outraged, while police insist they’re merely laser-focused on enforcing laws designed to prevent a greater appetite for crime.