A teenager accused of brutally assaulting a New York City police officer on a subway platform while out on bail flipped the question and asked a judge if he could enter a plea during a court hearing Tuesday.
The 16-year-old, who has not been named because of his age, asked Judge Althea Drysdale that question during a court appearance in Manhattan, but did not specify who he would like to press the charges against.
He was not heard from further when asked what charges he would like to press.
At Tuesday’s court hearing, the teenager answered “Yes, your honor” to every question he was asked earlier.
And New York City Mayor Eric Adams said the decision to release the boy again on bail had turned the Big Apple into a national “laughing stock” thanks to lax bail laws that prioritize the well-being of suspects over victims of crime.
The boy has now been released to a family center in Brooklyn, although he will roam free during the day and will be called to a curfew each evening.
Horrifying footage showed the 16-year-old punching a police officer in the head before grabbing him by the neck and slamming him repeatedly against the metal railings on Saturday.
The teenager was previously arrested for possession of a loaded weapon and robbery last Wednesday, but was released the following day after appearing in court.
The teenager appeared in court on Tuesday and asked if he could press charges, but did not specify who he would like to press charges against
A 16-year-old boy appeared in court Tuesday on assault charges for fighting with an NYPD officer on the subway over the weekend
Manhattan prosecutors asked for his release on “intense community supervision,” even after he was charged with robbing a 49-year-old man of his cellphone with three other accomplices.
It was the same “intense public monitoring” he was under between his alleged robbery attack and his alleged assault on a police officer.
“This man was arrested for robbery a few days ago, now he’s back,” Adams said. “Once we catch them, the system releases them and they repeat the action.”
“When I say we’re the laughing stock of the country, that’s what I’m talking about,” he continued, calling the act “just a complete disregard for public safety.”
On Sunday, the boy was again released without bail after the subway incident, and the case was transferred to family court, where court proceedings are not open to the public.
During a court hearing on Tuesday, he was ordered to remain in St John’s, a “non-secure detention facility”, where he will have a 6pm curfew while he awaits the outcome of the case.
“I’m going to release you on bail because the People have asked me to release you on bail,” Judge Drysdale said. “I just told you I was letting you go to St. John’s.”
Most cases against 16- and 17-year-olds now go to family court after the city’s age-raising legislation raised the age of criminal responsibility.
Another teenager was with the boy during the incident, a 16-year-old girl who ducked under the turnstile with him and initially tried to pull officers away from the boy by throwing punches.
At a press conference Tuesday, Mayor Adams called the release of Baugh and others like him a “disregard for public safety.”
On Saturday, the teenager reportedly jumped through the turnstiles at the East Harlem subway station before being approached by officers. He became “verbally aggressive” before punching the officer in the fight
Patrick Lynch, president of the New York City Police Benevolent Association, criticized lax bail systems that mean criminals can “choke a cop and be free hours later.”
The 16-year-old began punching officers several times in a desperate attempt to escape before trying to knock one of the officers into a metal railing
Officers attempted to bring the situation under control after the boy lunged at them, attempting to headbutt one of the officers.
She was pulled away by a female officer before fighting with her when her friend was arrested by NYPD officers.
Patrick Lynch, president of the Police Benevolent Association of the City of New York, said: “If New Yorkers want to know why the chaos in the transit system isn’t getting better faster – this is why.”
“Criminals in the underground know that they can get into a fight, strangle a police officer and come back in a few hours.
“Police are putting themselves on the line to make the subway safer, but we feel abandoned by a justice system that doesn’t support us.”
The teenager was charged with assaulting a police officer, obstructing public administration and resisting arrest, but was released less than 24 hours after the violence erupted
The teenager grappled with an NYPD officer who stopped him after he jumped the barriers. He was left with a bloody face after a brawl at an East Harlem subway station in broad daylight
A violent fight broke out just before 6pm and the boy became “verbally aggressive for over three minutes with officers” before they tried to arrest him.
During the gruesome footage, the boy began punching the officer and tried to force him to let go, banging all over the area.
At the end of the video, his face is covered in blood, and the officers managed to detain the teenager.
He was arrested and charged with assaulting a police officer, obstructing the activities of state authorities and resisting arrest.
He was released on recognizance on Sunday and a teenage girl was arrested on the same charges, although the outcome of her trial was not immediately known.
The officers said in a statement: “One officer suffered swelling to the head and shoulder and was treated and released to NYU. The second officer was also treated and released to NYU.”