A SQUAD of women known as the “Perv Busters” patrol the New York City subways to protect passengers from sex offenders.
The leader of the all-female group says the city’s subways are “underground hellholes” for women who encourage sex predators.
Crime on the New York City subways rose about 200 percent in mid-February, prompting Mayor Eric Adams to flood the platforms and stations with about 1,000 additional police officers.
The action appears to have fought crimes, but it’s still up over 70 percent compared to this time last year, according to the latest NYPD statistics.
As of March 13, 2022, there were three reported rapes on the subways, 128 robberies, 114 assaults, and 218 grand larceny, according to the NYPD.
The numbers are all significantly higher than March 13, 2021, when there was one reported rape on the subway, 67 robberies, 92 assaults and 94 grand larceny.
The figures do not break down how many of the victims are men or women.
But Mary “KC” Gethins told The Sun that women tend to be victims of crimes such as sexual assault, rape and purse snatching (grand theft).
“There are so many crimes against women that we don’t even know about because they go unreported,” KC said.
The Sun followed KC for about three hours on Saturday night as she led a group of five women through Penn Station, where Guardian Angels founder Curtis Sliwa joined them.
“There are so many corridors and perverts know exactly where to hide. It’s a non-stop revolving door, and it’s only gotten worse during the pandemic and bail bond reform.”
During the pandemic, the needs of the city evolved and the Guardian Angelettes adapted.
They split their time above and below the subways while taking on the role of a social worker, the group’s de facto captain said.
They help anyone who needs it, but their focus is on women.
“Sometimes they feel like if they report a fumble to the police, it’s not going to go anywhere. Sometimes they don’t feel comfortable telling a man. Sometimes it’s pride because they don’t want anyone to see them cry,” KC said.
“Perverts know if they commit a crime underground it’s only a minor charge and they’ll be out there in 24 to 48 hours and they’ll go right back and do the same.
“If they’ve already been caught, it’s not the first time they’ve done it.
PERV BUSTER VS MAN WITH AN ICE AX
The perv buster’s first major case was in 2017.
KC said they helped a woman fend off a man after he exposed himself on a subway and threatened her with an ice pick.
“This was the first time we’d pursued a case through the criminal justice system. We showed up to every court appearance in our red jackets and berets,” KC said.
“We were thrown out of the courtroom because the perv said we would intimidate him.”
The Perv Busters go out twice a week, and their “missions” depend on need and who’s available, KC said.
They urge women who have been attacked or harassed to take photos of the suspect.
As a group, they post flyers with “targets” or “serial perverts,” de-escalate potential violence against women, and use physical force — when necessary — to arrest a citizen or save a woman from an attack, KC said.
But mostly just being present is enough.
Regina “Chagi” Stewart, who joined the Perv Busters just over a year ago after losing her job during the pandemic, normally patrols the subways around the Woodside borough of Queens.
One night, she said, a woman ran away from her boyfriend during a domestic violence situation.
The perv busters — dressed in the traditional red jackets and red berets — surrounded them, and the man walked away, Stewart said.
“Just seeing us can defuse the situation and deter crime,” she said. “But there are so many things that happen to women on trains.
“It has happened to me before. Some guy grabbed my ass on the subway and wouldn’t let go, then ran off the train at the next stop.”
“Your face can’t hide panic”
Saturday’s “mission” in and around Penn Station was to help the homeless.
They distributed food, toiletries, and clothing while keeping an eye out for known predators in the area.
The main transportation hub is “like the mother ship” for homeless people, Sliwa said.
There are bathrooms, eating spots where they can dive dumpsters, and sleeping spots, he said.
But the Perv Busters have a different approach to distributing food to homeless women; above or below ground.
“If there’s a homeless woman or two with a group of men, I look her in the face. Her body language may hide fear, but her face cannot hide panic,” KC said.
So the Perv Busters are discreet. They will slip a card with contact information for help or whisper in their ear while giving them food, KC said.
At times, KC left the group to talk to a woman and ask if she was okay.
“If we really think they’re in danger, we come back because the men can say, ‘What did she want because they see our jackets?'”
Attacks on women on subways continue.
In early February, a man attempted to rape a 21-year-old woman on the E train in Lower Manhattan, the NYPD said.
She jumped off the seat after a man put his hands down her pants and then allegedly pushed her against the wall of the train and tried to rape her before running away.
The E-train, the only train that never travels above ground, has historically been a crime flashpoint and “a shuttle for the homeless,” Sliwa said.
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https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/18175091/perv-busters-guardian-angels-new-york-city/ Within the all-female ‘Perv Busters’ group who ride the NYC subways to protect women from sexual predators