NYC Subway Push Suspect Denied Bail

Suspect's lawyer suggests that fatal push might have been in self-defense.

ByABC News
December 6, 2012, 2:33 AM

Dec. 6, 2012— -- A Manhattan judge denied bail late Wednesday to a man charged with shoving a Korean immigrant onto subway tracks where he died after being hit by a train.

Assistant District Attorney James Lin told the court that defendant Naeem Davis, 30, of Queens, N.Y., "has admitted to lifting [the victim] off his feet and pushing off the wall behind him to add more force."

Lin said victim Ki-Suck Han, 58, had been described by witnesses as "rolling over a few times like a bowling ball'' before being struck by a train as it pulled into a crowded Manhattan subway station Monday afternoon.

Davis appeared in court Wednesday around 11 p.m. with a shaved head and a goatee. He had been charged earlier Wednesday with one count of second-degree murder and one count of second-degree murder with depraved indifference.

Davis' attorney, Stephen Pokart, told the court that two out of three witnesses failed to pick Davis out of a series of lineups Wednesday morning.

He added that Han might have been intoxicated, and suggested that the fatal push might have been an act of self-defense.

Pokart cited a news account that quoted Han's wife as saying her husband "left home drunk and angry" after an argument.

He added, "I want to know how drunk and how angry Mr. Han was."

"What was Mr. Han doing to my client?" Pokart asked.

Davis could be heard arguing with Han before the fatal shove, according to surveillance video from the station. Davis told police that Han was harassing him and would not leave him alone, so he pushed Han.

Police are also awaiting toxicology results on Han, who was found with an empty pint bottle of vodka on him when he died, according to sources.

"Our family is grieving now, but we want to thank everyone who has reached out to us and offered their help. We are suffering in sorrow but we have the support of our family, friends and church to help us through this time," Ashley Han, the victim's daughter, said in court.

Davis was ordered held without bail pending a second court appearance Dec. 11, Manhattan Criminal Court Judge Lynn Kottler said in court.