A 15-year-old boy died after he slipped and fell off a train while subway surfing in New York on Dec. 1, according to ABC7 News. Ka’Von Wooden was riding on top of the J-train going over the Williamsburg Bridge in Brooklyn when fell.
According to the New York Police Department, the accident happened at 11:23 a.m. as the train was heading southbound. Wooden fell under the car and hit the third rail near the Marcy Avenue station in Williamsburg. A train conductor reportedly saw Wooden on the top of the train and called for help but unfortunately, it was too late. Wooden was pronounced dead at the scene.
Subway surfing is a trend in which teenagers ride on top of a train while recording themselves and later post the video on social media. Wooden’s mother, 53-year-old Y’Vonda Maxwell said her son was on the spectrum and was bullied into subway surfing on the train.
“It’s not something he would do on his own,” she said. “He was a kid on the spectrum. He got in on the wrong crowd. He was bullied because he was autistic.”
NYPD Chief of Transit Jason Wilcox also noted the dangers of subway surfing during a MTA board meeting back in June.
“Riding on the outside of a subway car is not only illegal, but incredibly dangerous,” he said. “Each year we see teens killed engaging in so-called subway surfing. We enforce rules prohibiting moving between the train cars in order to combat this dangerous behavior.”
Community leader Craig Housen said that a lack of resources for Black and Hispanic teenagers in the community leads to bored teenagers finding ways to entertain themselves.
“This is not the first or second occurrence, and this is largely due to the fact that we are not making resources available to our Black and Hispanic youths of Williamsburg,” he said. “What happens is they find other ways and means to entertain themselves, and most of the time it’s not usually safe.”
A GoFundMe page set up for Ka’Von’s family on Dec. 2 to help with expenses noted his sweet nature.
“Ka’Von was a bright, smart, charismatic, and caring individual,” wrote Maxwell. “He showed a lot of love to the people he cared about, let alone anyone. Shy as he could be, he was a friendly soul.”