Outrage over New York Post front page showing man about to be killed by Subway train
Published 05/12/2012 | 15:48
THE New York Post newspaper has provoked outrage after publishing a picture of a man about to be hit by a Subway train on its frontpage.
The paper published the front page which shows a man struggling to get off the tracks after being pushed by an attacker, yesterday.
The photograph, taken by R Umar Abbasi, shows the man, Ki Suk Han, standing upright with at least one arm on the platform as he attempts to scramble to safety as the train emerges from the tunnel behind him.
Just moments after the photograph was taken, Han, 58, was killed by the Subway train.
A video taken by a passer-by appears to show the man's attacker arguing with Mr Han, minutes before he allegedly pushed him onto the tracks.
He initially escaped the scene, but is now in police custody.
Authorities said a suspect has implicated himself in the death of Han.
Investigators have recovered a security video showing a man fitting the description of the suspect working with street vendors near Rockefeller Center, New York Police Department spokesman Paul Browne said.
"The individual we talked to made statements implicating himself in the incident," Browne said.
Witnesses told investigators they saw the suspect talking to himself Monday afternoon before he approached Ki-Suck Han at the Times Square station, got into an altercation with him and pushed him into the train's path.
Police said he tried to climb a few feet to safety but got trapped between the train and the platform's edge.
The photographer, Abbasi, said in an audio clip on the Post's website that he used the flash on his camera to try to warn the train driver that someone was on the tracks.
He said he wasn't strong enough to lift Han.
"I wanted to help the man, but I couldn't figure out how to help," Abbasi said. "It all happened so fast."
Mayor Michael Bloomberg said yesterday that he believed that "in this case, it appeared to be a psychiatric problem."
The mayor said Han, "if I understand it, tried to break up a fight or something and paid for it with his life."
The moral issue among professional photojournalists in such situations is "to document or to assist," said Kenny Irby, an expert in the ethics of visual journalism at the Poynter Institute, a Florida-based nonprofit journalism school.
Other media outlets chimed in on the controversy, many questioning why the photograph had been taken and published.
"I'm sorry. Somebody's on the tracks. That's not going to help," said Al Roker on NBC's "Today" show as the photo was displayed.
CNN's Soledad O'Brien tweeted: "I think it's terribly disturbing — imagine if that were your father or brother." Larry King reached out to followers on Twitter to ask: "Did the @nypost go too far?"