ATLANTA - MARTA officials are investigating a knockdown, drag-out fight that happened on one of their trains. The out-of-control brawl was caught on camera Tuesday.
The video, originally posted on flyvidz.com (warning: uncensored video), shows two transgender women exchanging words with a group of men. One of the men then kicks the woman and a fight begins. At one point, one of the women’s clothes are pulled off and she strips completely naked. The fight then continues. The whole video lasts more than two minutes and had more than 500,000 views by Friday afternoon.
Channel 2’s Ryan Young spoke with the women and MARTA officials about the video.
The women told Young they were walking to the Five Points MARTA station when a group of men approached them and started yelling at them. They said the strangers followed them into the station and waited on the platform next to them while taking pictures. They said they believe the strangers targeted them because they are transgender.
“[They] just kept of asking us was we real,” said Janell Crosby. “Like really trying to get us. ‘Are you real?’ 'Are y’all this or that?’ Just trying to embarrass us.”
"They were trying to find out if we are men or women,” said Tyra Woods. “I shouldn’t have to disclose who I am to an innocent person who I’m not even interested in talking to.”
Crosby and Woods say they were harassed, attacked and embarrassed, and no one came to give them any help.
“I really didn’t want to fight, but he just kicked me and tried to make a big scene,” said Crosby.
“It’s all over the internet and like, I’m naked,” said Woods. “I felt like since it was in a public transportation, we should’ve felt like we should’ve been secure.”
Officials said they won’t stand for that type of behavior and have opened an investigation into what happened on the train. They are actively searching for the two men who may have started the fight.
“We will not tolerate this kind of behavior on MARTA,” said MARTA spokesperson Lyle Harris. “We are now taking this under investigation. The MARTA Police Department is looking at what happened on that tape to see if we can determine who was involved and what happened and we will take every action.”
MARTA wasn’t made aware of the incident until Young called them Friday afternoon. They said none of the riders called 911 or alerted staff.
“We depend on our customers to help us make sure the system is as safe as possible,” said Harris. “We do a great job, we have a very safe transit system; unfortunately, we will have events that happen and we depend on customers to give us information when it does.
Just last year MARTA launched a new campaign and smartphone app to give riders another level of safety. The campaign focuses of riding with respect. Riders can use the “See and Say” app to send photos and texts to MARTA police when they see trouble.
The women said they tried to dial 911 at one point, but they were in a tunnel and had no signal.