Yusef Staine was shot and killed early Wednesday morning around 1:45 a.m. on a LIRR train in Ronkonkoma, New York. A shocking video captured the shooting. Police have opened an investigation and are actively looking for the shooter.
Horrifying video shows Staine and the gunman walking down the aisle of a train car. Both men had their backs to the camera and footage captured the moment the gunman pulled the gun out of his pants and pointed it at Yusef Staine.
The gunman shot Staine once in the back of the head. The video footage showed the 20-year-old falling to the ground. Then the gunman seemed to fire another shot before running out of the train car. He was wearing all black, and police have not identified him.
Yusef Staine was taken to the hospital where he was pronounced dead. Staine was from West Babylon, N.Y.
WARNING: The video below is graphic and violent. It may be disturbing to some readers.
According to reports, the shooting happened on an out-of-service train in Ronkonkoma. LIRR officials were preparing the train to return to Penn Station. Yusef Staine and the gunman were the only two people in the train car at the time. Other passengers were on the train in other cars, according to Suffolk PD.
Police reported that the shooting was a random, isolated incident and that no other passengers were injured.
“The two people involved, the shooter and the victim, appear to have been traveling together, and they appear to have known each other,” Suffolk County police Det. Lt. Kevin Beyrer said. “I’d like to stress this is not a random event. No other passengers were in danger. There were only two or three other passengers on the train. They were not in danger. This appears to be an isolated event. It does not appear to have any connection to any other incidents in the past.”
Reports show that the two men traveled from Wyandanch to Penn Station together and then back to Ronkonkoma before the shooting took place. Video footage from a train platform showed them talking. A motive for the shooting is unknown.
Neither man paid for his ticket when boarding the train, and they were given IOUs from LIRR officials. Some are reporting that the two men were homeless. Suffolk County Police and MTA Police are running a joint investigation into the shooting, and it is still ongoing.
Following his death, Yusef Staine’s mother posted about her son on Facebook. Pamela Usher said, “FB Friends and family, the hardest post I ever had to make in my life! My son Yusef Staine 20 years old was brutally murdered last week Wednesday on the Long Island Railroad! Anyone with info please call 1800-220-Tips! Thanks for the outpouring of love, support and prayers!”
She also spoke to ABC News and said she wanted justice for her son. “He was killed, and we need the person who did it to come forward,” Usher added.
New Yorkers have seen an increase in violence on trains since the beginning of 2022. Mayor Eric Adams recently announced a new plan to ensure safety on the New York subways. Police officers and mental health professionals will be in the train stations to enforce rules and help the homeless population that currently lives in the subways.
The mayor says that they will be removing the homeless from the area and providing them with new shelter and mental health help. Officials report that over 1,000 homeless individuals call the subways home.
“No more just doing whatever you want,” Adams said at a news conference. “Those days are over. Swipe your MetroCard, ride the system, get off at your destination. That’s what this administration is saying.”
Mayor Eric Adams’ plan was put into action on Monday.