Transit workers getting punched in the face and spit on — the attacks caught on camera.
"Listen, our people come here to do a job and we want to go home in one piece," said Tony Utano, the president of TWU Local 100, the transit union. "We don't need to get assaulted."
But that's what happened to driver Denver Thompson after a man argued with him over the fare outside the Dyre Avenue subway station in the Bronx.
"It was like a split-second," Thompson said. "He was raining on top of me. I didn't have a chance to defend myself, it was totally by surprise."
The attacker is one of five suspects plastered on a "wanted" poster unveiled Wednesday by the Transport Workers Union. The union says the new initiative is needed to protect its workers and draw attention to the dangers they face.
"There are angry passengers out there because of delays in service," Utano said. "The other issue is there's homeless out there. They're on the subways, they have no place to go, and they're taking it out also on transit workers."
Thompson suffered a concussion and needed surgery on his left shoulder after his beating. He's still out of disability, and his attacker remained at large as of this writing.
"I am looking over my shoulder all the time, even standing here," Thompson said near a bus stop. "This guy hasn't been caught."
Also making the TWU's "Most Wanted" list is a man who spit on a Bronx bus driver last November, two males who slugged a station cleaner in the Bronx, and a man who sucker-punched a 60-year-old Q train conductor at the Prospect Park subway station.
The MTA did not provide figures on assaults against transit workers. The union says its workers recently went through a rough spell.
"In a series of six weeks, we had over 11 or 12 assaults," Utano said. "In fact, in one day we had three assaults."
Union representatives will soon begin handing out the "Most Wanted" flyers at bus stops and in subway stations.
"I think it's going to help," Thompson said. "It's going to get their pictures out there in the general public, people can identify them."