Bay Area sees spike in violent crime on its transit system

Violent crimes on San Francisco Bay Area’s rapid transit system — BART — have climbed 69 percent in the past decade — even as crime has dropped across California, according the state’s Department of Justice.

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San Fran straphangers on edge after third BART murder

San Francisco-area straphangers are on edge Tuesday following the third…

The troubling numbers, released earlier this month, detail 428 violent BART crimes in 2017, most of which were robberies. That’s nearly double the 254 total violent crimes recorded in 2007.

And 2018’s tally of violent crimes –222 for the first six months of the year, compared to 218 for the same period last year– is on pace to surpass 2017’s numbers.

Safety concerns aboard the BART mushroomed last week when three straphangers were murdered in just five days — most recently , Sunday’s brutal slay of 18-year-old Nia Wilson at the MacArthur Station in Oakland.

The tragic teen was set to graduate high school in December with “very high honors” and planned to join the military, according to her father.

“I should be planning her graduation, not her funeral.”

Wilson’s sister was also stabbed in the neck during the unprovoked attack, but survived. Prosecutors are seeking a life sentence against parolee John Cowell, 27, who was arrested for the savage attack, thanks to an anonymous tip.

Another attack last week involved a 47-year-old transient who was declared brain-dead after a suspect — who is still at large — punched him in the side of the head on the platform at the Bay Fair Station in San Leandro.

And on Friday, Pittsburg, Calif. resident Gerald Bisbee, 51, died from an infection from cuts he sustained when a 20-year-old stranger jumped him, after the two quarreled at the Pleasant Hill Station in Walnut Creek. Police busted Abdul Bey in connection with the assault, KRON4 reported.

A roughly 22 percent ridership spike can account for some of the violence, but certainly not all of it, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

Scared straphangers are using #DearBART as they vent on social media.

“#DearBART how hard is it to keep people from doing drugs on the train? Why is there no police presence when people are so blatant in drug use and there is a high possibility of violence?” @ShannyMac24 tweeted Tuesday from Concord, California.

“I think they should focus on people not getting murdered,” @Bern_Naste replied a day later.

“Have 2 family members that ride bart daily, wish there was an alternative. No longer feel safe. As bad as Chicago is their public transportation works and is clean and well patrolled #DearBART,” @nelsonrob50 tweeted Wednesday.

With Post Wires

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