A drunken investment banker was arrested Friday morning after repeatedly beating and indiscriminately beating an MTA employee at a Brooklyn subway station.
Jean-François Coste, 53, was at Coney Island’s Stillwell Avenue station around 12:15 a.m. when the 56-year-old operator punched him as he began his shift, police said.
Tanya McCray, 56, was exiting a public mezzanine “crew room” when she saw Coste, a senior equity analyst at Tocqueville Asset Management, about to step inside.
“This is not a public place,” said a spokesperson. “He was clearly drunk. She pushed the door and it clicked and he hit her in the face at least twice.”
McCray, a 21-year MTA veteran and train driver, fought back and began hitting Coste with a lunch bag with a thermos inside, a spokesman said. After another crew member came to his aid, the banker ran down the train platform.
“All the workers in the crew cabin will come out and chase him,” a spokesman said. “He jumped on the train and transportation officials cornered him.”
Coste was arrested and charged with assaulting, harassing, and intimidating a transit employee. He was released without bail and his next trial date is set for his March.
McCray said he was caught off guard by the attack.
“I didn’t see him hit me,” she said. “I didn’t see the punch. It happened so fast.”
McCray, who was taken to a local hospital with bruises, hopes the perpetrators will be brought to justice.
“I just hope justice is done,” McCrae said. “I hope he gets jailed. It’s not fair to think it’s okay for people to attack us. It’s not okay. We’re just here to do our job.”
The Public Transportation Workers’ Union plans to show force at the cost court hearing, a spokesman said.
Richard Davis, president of the TWU Local 100, said the public should “treat public transit workers as heroes, not punchbags.
“We have done our best for this city over and over again, and most recently we survived the pandemic, but this is the gratitude we got. We will meet this man in court.”
Coste could not be reached for comment.