Uptown Chainsaw Massacre: No One Wants Responsibility

Written by NYPress on . Posted in Blog, Breaking News.


Photo Courtesy of Wiki Commons

New Yorkers are no strangers to being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Six years ago, then 64-year-old Michael Steinberg was on his way to work the night shift at the post office when things got a little dicey. He was at the 110th and Broadway station at 3 a.m., when a man approached him armed with two chainsaws.

The man, Tareyton Williams, calmly approached Steinberg, the NY Post reports, and began carving him up. Steinberg, slight in stature, reportedly begged Williams to accept credit cards and money, but the assault continued unhindered. Eventually Williams took Steinberg’s cards and money and left the station.

The saw, which punctured Steinberg’s lung, would have killed him if it went one millimeter deeper a doctor later told him.

Williams went to prison, but not before apologizing to Steinberg, who accepted. But Steinberg hasn’t forgiven everyone for the life-altering trauma—he has sued both Transit Authority and Five Star Electric Corp. for damages, blaming the two companies for the chainsaws being left unattended in the first place.

Neither of these companies has apologized to Steinberg. A judge let TA off the hook, the Post writes, but the case against Five Star begins today. Five Star maintains it’s not at fault for the incident.

Steinberg may have forgiven the insane man who attacked him, but the assault left him with extreme emotional trauma he cannot shake. He can no longer ride the subway or go to work; his life has been ruined, he says.

Equally worrisome is no one taking responsibility for what happened—how many more chainsaws must be appropriated as torture devices before leaving equipment unattended is considered unlawful?

—Alissa Fleck

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