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Cuomo says he will target rising assaults on subways

ALBANY — Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on Friday said he will propose tougher criminal penalties for those who commit sexual assault or other assaults in subways as the crimes increase, often by repeat perpetrators.

"There ought to be a law that says you don’t have an unlimited right to sexually assault people in the subways, you don’t have an unlimited right to violently attack people in the subways,” Cuomo told NY1. “This is a crisis and it’s getting worse.”

Cuomo provided no details of his plans, which will likely be part of his State of the State speech in January.

He cited this week’s arrest of a man after police accused him of pushing a woman on a subway platform, She hit her head on a stopped train.

In June, the Democratic-led Senate voted 60-2 to pass a subway assault bill, but the measure wasn’t approved by the Democratic-led Assembly. That bill would have made first-degree aggravated sexual contact on public transportation a Class D felony -- punishable by up to 7 years in prison.

The proposal also would have made public lewdness while a passenger on public transportation a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to a year in jail.

The bill was introduced with just days left in the legislative session and died in committee in the Assembly.

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