Shooting of Cop Linked to Troubled Bus Line

As investigators dig into the shooting of a police officer on Wednesday, one fact stands out: the accused gunman was allegedly trying to ride the B46 bus without paying his fare. That he was fare-jumping isn't that surprising on the B46 line; it's a route with a history of trouble.

So far this year, the MTA says 41 incidents have occurred on the B46, far more than any other line.  An "incident" could be anything from simple fare evasion, to harassment, to assault of a driver or passenger.

It's unclear why the line is a magnet for problems, though NYPD Chief of Department Philip Banks noted that it's an especially busy route.

A spokesman for the union representing bus drivers says many disputes seem to begin when passengers refuse to pay the fare.

In 2008, a B46 bus driver, Edwin Thomas, was fatally stabbed by a fare evader.