A troubled panhandler told cops he was trying to pay off his K2 debts when he allegedly shoved a straphanger onto Midtown subway tracks for not giving him $1 last week, according to court papers.
Justin Pena, 23, who was arraigned Wednesday on attempted murder and reckless endangerment charges, told cops he became enraged when the 36-year-old victim snubbed him and “didn’t like how he said no,” a complaint in the case said.
“Do you want a piece of me,” Pena growled as he allegedly slugged the victim, according to court papers.
“Do you want to die?”
Police said Pena later told cops that he has “anger issues” and is hooked on the synthetic drug.
“I was panhandling,” the complaint said. “I owed someone money for K2. I asked a person for a dollar and I didn’t like how he said no, so we were fighting and I saw the tracks and I pushed him onto the tracks.”
The straphanger was waiting for a B or D train at the 42nd Street-Bryant Park station around 6:50 p.m. when Pena attacked him.
Pena fled but was collared after police released surveillance photos of him.
The victim survived the assault and was pulled to safety by bystanders with minor injuries to his right leg and left arm and shoulder, police said.
He was treated at Bellevue Hospital and later released.
Pena was ordered held without bail Wednesday and is due back in court on Jan. 19.
It wasn’t the first time Pena had been involved in transit system violence — he still has a pending assault case for allegedly punching a 62-year-old man during an unprovoked attack in January on an F train station on 23rd Street, authorities said.