So it turns out that subway hero Joseph Lozito really is a Philly guy after all.
And that's not just because the burly Northeast Philadelphia resident took matters into his own hands back in February during a violent showdown in a New York City subway car underneath Times Square - taking down a homicidal slasher with a move he saw in an Ultimate Fighting match.
It's also because Lozito's carrying out another local tradition: He got a lawyer, and now he's suing.
The 40-year-old Lozito, who commutes to the Big Apple, where he works as a ticket-taker at Lincoln Center, confirmed last night in a phone interview that he's suing New York City and its police department for failing to protect him during his encounter with alleged killer Maksim Gelman.
He said that the suit, which will be filed by his Long Island-based lawyer, Edmond Chakmakian, is based on reports that two New York cops who were on board in the front car locked themselves in the motorman's compartment instead of coming to Lozito's aid as Gelman ran toward him brandishing a chef's knife.
"When the news was brought to my attention that police had an opportunity to intervene and maybe prevent the whole incident, and it was explained to me they chose to stay in the motorman's compartment instead of coming out, I was very upset," Lozito said.
Lozito returned to his job at Lincoln Center earlier this month, but he said last night that he still suffers from headaches every day and other pain from his head wounds and a thumb injury he suffered during the Feb. 12 attack.
He confirmed that the suit also cites the police for failing to offer Lozito medical aid after he was stabbed in the encounter.
Lozito, who kicked Gelman to the floor of the subway car but was stabbed several times during the scuffle, has credited a Good Samaritan with helping to stop his bleeding.