Crime and Safety

NYC subway victim reveals why he’s voting for Lee Zeldin

One of the Big Apple’s latest subway crime victims told The Post on Tuesday he’s voting for Lee Zeldin in the gubernatorial race — because “maybe he would give us a safer community.”

Henry Cai, who was robbed, beaten and shot with a gel gun on a No. 7 train in Flushing on Sunday, said he thinks the Long Island congressman can put a dent in runaway crime in the five boroughs.

“I’m not into politics, but I heard a lot of good things about him,” said Cai, 34. “Right now, New York City is not safe. Maybe he would give us a safer community.”

Asked if he thought Gov. Kathy Hochul was doing a good job, the hip-hop artist said, “I don’t think so because the crime rates are going up.

“The subway, it’s getting more scary,” said Cai, who has 58,000 Instagram followers. “After the pandemic, it’s too much crime. On the train, it’s not safe anymore.”

Queens subway attack victim Henry Cai
Queens subway attack victim Henry Cai says he’s voting for Lee Zeldin because “maybe he would give us a safer community.”
Instagram / @tmstoomuchswag

Cai was on a southbound train at the Main Street station in Queens when a gang of thugs began to harass him and asked for his Ray-Ban prescription glasses, he said.

The brutes followed him into another subway car on the crowded train and onto the platform at the station, slapping him around and shooting him with the gel gun — an imitation pistol that fires water-absorbing polymer beads.

The creeps made off with his $500 specs, but he clung to his gold chain, he said.

Subway robbers fleeing an attack on Queens straphanger Henry Cai.
The robbers fled with Henry Cai’s glasses before hopping on an F train.

“They said, ‘Give me your chain,’ ” he recalled. “Of course I’m not going to give them my chain, so they kept chasing me. They kept attacking me. I had to go to a different car to avoid them. Eventually, they took my glasses, and I couldn’t see.

“They hit me with their fist on the back of my head and the front and the face. They shot me with a gel gun. I thought it was a BB gun. It still hurts, but it didn’t leave no injuries or marks.”

Cai added that bystanders who witnessed the assault said nothing and didn’t help him.

“Nobody was trying to help. Everybody could see,” he said. “The train was full of people, and they didn’t intervene. [The suspects] attacked me, and nobody said anything.”

Cai said that once the train pulled into the station and he and his five assailants got off on the lower platform, he yelled for help — but police officers were on the upper platform.

He said that once he reached the cops, he told them, “ ‘I need help, somebody robbed me.’

” ‘They took my glasses, I can’t see.’ ”

Meanwhile, the muggers, whom cops described as in their late teens or early 20s, ended up hopping on a departing F train and escaping.

Cai, who is Asian American, said he considers the attack a hate crime.

US Rep. Lee Zeldin
Queens subway attack victim Henry Cai says he’s voting for Lee Zeldin (above) for governor because he hopes the pol would help stifle the crime wave hitting New York City.
Dennis A. Clark

“It feels like a hate crime because they see I’m Asian and I’m by myself and I really like fancy stuff, so I became a target,” he said.

Police have not labeled the incident a bias attack.

The assault is just the latest in a rash of transit crimes in the city this year.

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