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Crime File: Another Heroin Death in the Bronx

Crime File: Another Heroin Death in the Bronx
SO-CALLED “LUSH” workers have been spotted lurking around the end of train lines, including the 205th Street/Norwood station on the D line, waiting to rob an unsuspecting rider.
Photo by Tatyana Turner

In the early hours of Thursday, May 25, a man walked into Montefiore Medical Center carrying a needle and a bag of heroin. He made his way to the bathroom, locked the door, and never stepped out.

“He passed away,” said Lieutenant Brian Hogan of the Narcotics division as he informed the crowd of nearly 50 who attended the 52nd Precinct Community Council meeting. “That’s up to number 11 [this year]. Last year we had 23; we’re going to surpass that number.” Overdose and addiction is an issue that has been plaguing the Bronx, including Norwood.

Authorities blame the spike in heroin deaths on fentanyl, a powerful narcotic that’s now mixed with heroin.

“If you inhale a small amount, you’re going to die,” said Hogan.

Although each overdose is treated as a crime scene, Hogan emphasized the “Good Samaritan Law,” where a person who calls in for help whether it’s for themselves or a loved one, will not get arrested.

“You might want to speak to your kids about this,” stressed Hogan. “This is serious stuff.

NYPD to Late Nighters: Beware of Lush Workers

As if the daily commute wasn’t hard enough, subway riders have another worry on their hands: sticky fingered “lush workers” who rob snoozing straphangers.

It happens mostly between midnight and 5 a.m., according to the NYPD. Late night commuters will more than likely have a guaranteed seat, enjoy a quiet ride in a near empty subway car and be lulled to sleep by the subtle rocking of the train as it glides along the tracks. However, NYPD urges commuters to stay up for their safety.

Within the past month, a number of passengers in Norwood awoken to the nightmare of stolen possessions taken by a so-called “lush worker.” The thieves get their names for often targeting drunk, or “lush,” passengers who doze off so deeply they miss their stop and wind up at the end of a train line.

“We’ve made five arrests, [mostly] on 205th Street on the D line and Fordham Road on the 4 line,” according to Officer Shauna Smith from Transit District 11. “Three of them were lush workers, the other two have been grand larceny.”

“The arrests that we have made have been between the hours of 5 and 8 in the morning,” Smith added.

The victims who had their property stolen did not realize their possessions were no longer on them until the end of the train line. “In this case, that would be the D line on 205th Street or Woodlawn on the 4 line,” said Smith. “You have to be aware of your surroundings.”

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