A woman who was stabbed on the A train subway said Tuesday that she’s “glad to be alive” as her attacker remains on the loose.
Ashley Painson, 29, recounted her harrowing ordeal in an interview with The Post, claiming a fight broke out with her attacker on Sunday after she refused to open a door for another man who hadn’t paid his fare.
“The guy came in and started getting in my face and calling me names,” Painson said.
Her attacker demanded she get off after 14th Street – and when she didn’t he hit her in the head, sparking a fight that ended with Painson stabbed in the gut.
“He gave me five stitches,” she said, raising her shirt to show bandages near her abdomen. “I’m glad to be alive.”
She now says she is concerned with a lack of police in the subway system.
“They need to have the trains stations be more safe, more police,” she said. “I don’t know why there were no cops.”
“Going through the tunnel you don’t know what could happen,” she added. “Anything could happen. I could have lost my life trying to fight this guy off me.”
The attacker, who was wearing a camouflage backpack and carrying a bag, was seen leaving the subway at Canal Street, she said. A witness cellphone video shows him getting off the train with his knife still in his hands.
“I’m angry because somebody needs to get that man off the streets because somebody else could get injured,” she said. It could be worse than what happened to me. He shouldn’t be on the street.”
“I don’t know why women are being targeted, she went on. “We aren’t even a threat … Nobody deserves to get stabbed over a dispute.”
After the attack, Painson called her mom, Charlene Shields, 48.
“He’s lucky that she was by herself because if I was there I would’ve killed him,” Shields told The Post, saying violence in the city has her constantly worried about the wellbeing of her nine children.
The violence broke out when Painson entered the station at 23rd and Eighth Avenue, then declined to open the door for another man at his request. The attacker then allegedly opened the door for the other man, and the attacker engaged in a verbal argument with Painson as a result.
He allegedly threatened her and called her names as they got on the train, then demanded she get off or he’d hit her, Painson said.