Police are now randomly searching personal belongings in the NY transit system:
Alarmed by a new round of mass transit attacks in London, police in New York began random searches of bags and packages brought into the city’s vast subway system.
The inspections started on a small scale Thursday in Manhattan and were expanded during Friday morning’s rush hour _ a development welcomed by some commuters.
“I’m not against it,” Ian Compton, 35, a computer consultant, said at Grand Central Terminal in midtown Manhattan. “I think any measures for safety that aren’t terribly intrusive are worth doing.”
Officers, some with bomb-sniffing dogs, were stopping people carrying bags as they entered subways, commuter trains, buses and ferries at various points in the city, police said. Anyone who refuses a search will be turned away, and those caught carrying drugs or other contraband could be arrested.
One man was arrested during Thursday evening rush hour at the Brentwood Long Island Rail Road station after police became suspicious, stopped his van and allegedly found a machete and other weapons. Gilbert Hernandez, 34, had been convicted of possessing a pipe bomb in 1996, police said.
Friday morning, an officer was seen outside a subway stop at Penn Station with a sign saying, “NYPD, Backpacks and other containers subject to inspection.”
No doubt, this will be the source of numerous lawsuits. Or maybe not.