A New York City bus driver was stabbed in the stomach and slashed above his right eye after midnight Tuesday by a man not allowed to board between stops.
Police responded to a call just before 12:30 a.m. regarding a male bus driver stabbed at the intersection of Ocean Avenue and Flatbush Avenue.
Officers found a 39-year-old MTA bus driver with a sustained stab wound to the stomach and a slash wound above the eye.
The driver told the officers he was between stops when a man in his 30s tried to board the bus. The bus driver told the man he could board at the next bus stop. As the bus was paused at the next intersection, the suspect forced his way onto the bus through the rear passenger door.
The bus driver encountered the suspect and the two began fighting. The suspect then stabbed and slashed the victim before fleeing the bus on foot eastbound on Empire Boulevard, police said.
The bus driver was taken to New York-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital where he remains in stable condition.
NYPD said no the suspect has not been arrested, and the investigation remains ongoing.
MTA said the bus involved in the incident was a free shuttle operating as a substitute for the Q subway line during a planned subway outage.
"We are working closely with investigators who are determining the facts of this incident," MTA Chief Safety and Security Officer Pat Warren said. "Violence against transit employees or riders is never acceptable which is why we worked so hard in Albany to pass a new assault protection bill."
"This is a regular working-class guy who was doing the business of the city, making sure people could get where they needed to go when the subway was down, and he was subjected to an unprovoked and horrible attack," J.P. Patafio, the TWU Local 100 Vice President representing Bus Operators in Brooklyn and Queens, said in a statement. "This criminal must be caught, and he should get the maximum penalty under the law."