NYC crime: Woman savagely beaten in Howard Beach subway station describes the pain, trauma

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HOWARD BEACH, Queens (WABC) — Police have arrested a man in a brutal assault inside a Queens subway station that was caught on surveillance video.

It happened around 5:15 a.m. on Tuesday, September 20, at the Howard Beach-JFK Airport station.

Authorities say a 33-year-old woman was approached by a man who tried to start a conversation and then followed her into the mezzanine.

When the woman did not respond and ignored the advances, police say the man dragged her across the floor of the mezzanine and slammed her into the wall, where he repeatedly pounded her with his fists and kicked her about the face and body.

One passerby tried to intervene but retreated onto the platform when the man advanced towards him.

The attacker then kicked and punched the woman several more times before fleeing the scene.

Police responded and arrested the suspect.

The victim, who appears to be a security guard, was transported to Jamaica Hospital where she was treated for a serious but non-life threatening eye injury.

“Do you know how scared I am now? I was never a person to be scared,” victim Elizabeth Gomes said.

She said her head throbs with pain, and she’s barely slept in a week since the attack.

“I can’t see anything on my right side, honestly. And it just hurts,” Gomes said.

She says the suspect was muttering incoherently about “Satan” in the moments before the attack.

“He’s talking about the devil. He’s talking about a whole bunch of nonsense,” Gomes said.

Gomes’ husband is heartbroken and furious.

“Man, I watched the video, and it tears my heart out of me,” Clement Tucker said.

The suspect, 41-year-old Waheed Foster, is now charged with felony assault.

In 1995, law enforcement sources say Foster was arrested for murdering his 82-year-old foster grandmother in a brutal beating at the age of 14. Six years later, he was arrested for stabbing his 21-year-old sister with a screwdriver. Then in 2010, he was arrested for attacking three workers at the Creedmore Psychiatric Center, where he was an inpatient. He was on parole until November 2024 at the time of last week’s attack.

Gomes says there were no police officers anywhere in the station. She said there was no one to prevent the attack and no one on the scene to respond to it.

“Every day is an incident in the subway,” she said. “What happened to all these police officer they said they will have there to protect us? There’s like nobody to be found. I don’t understand.”

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