LOS ANGELES (LALATE) – A R. Umar Abbasi NY Post photo of pushed subway traveler Ki-s*** Han is prompting debate tonight. R. Umar Abbasi took a picture of Ki-s*** Han after Han was pushed into New York City subway tracks. Then the New York Post purchased the subway photo and put it on their cover. Tonight criticism is being levied against the NY Post for running the Han picture with shocking captions.
Last week, Alec Baldwin had stunning allegations about the New York Post. This week, the Post was under fire for their fake “exclusive” photos of “Derek Eater”, claiming that Derek Jeter had gained weight when he hadn’t.
But tonight, bigger trouble is striking the Post. Deputy Police Commissioner Paul Browne confirms that Han, 58, was pushed into subway tracks Tuesday afternoon by a male suspect. Browne tells news that the suspect, now in custody, was arguing with Han. Moments later, the male pushed Han into the subway tracks.
At 12:30 pm today, the suspect allegedly was waiting at the 49th Street station with Han. For reasons still unknown, a dispute erupted in which the suspect pushed Han. Han struggled to get out of the tracks while the suspect fled. Han was married with a child. Roughly two hours later, the suspect was arrested at 50th Street and 7th Avenue. The suspect is reportedly 30 years old and from Queens.
Late Tuesday, the Post ran on its cover the Han picture. In the picture, Han is still alive and struggling to get out of tracks. The image is shot by R. Umar Abbasi.
But who is R. Umar Abbasi? Local news is reporting that Abbasi was allegedly a “freelance photographer” and not a staff photographer for the Post. R. Umar Abbasi tells news “I wanted to help the man, but I couldn’t figure out how to help. It all happened so fast.” He claims he wasn’t strong enough to pull Han out of the tracks. Abbasi tells news that he chose to use the camera’s flash to warn the train of trouble up ahead. Critics are skeptical of that assertion.
But the second issue prompting debate is the Post’s decision to run the Abbasi’s photo on its cover. The Post even added the caption “Pushed on the subway track, this man is about to die” and the words “DOOMED”.
“The @nypost and the employee who made the call to put the man about to die from a train on its cover are …. trash,” wrote Howard Stern producer Lee Gerowitz today. Soledad O’Brien took issue with the Post running the picture. “I think it’s terribly disturbing — imagine if that were your father or brother.”
So was Abbasi paid for the photo? That remains unclear. But CNN is reporting tonight “Reached by CNN, Abbasi was adamant that he would talk to the network only for pay.” Baldwin said of the Post just days ago “Everyone who breathes air knows the Post is the worst newspaper in human history.”