Charges pending against suspect in Amtrak conductor shooting

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NAPERVILLE, Ill. — Police and prosecutors are still sorting out details in Tuesday's shooting of an Amtrak conductor during a Southwest Chief station stop.

By late Wednesday, Naperville police had yet to name the suspect identifying him only as a Wisconsin man in his late 70s. The 45-year-old conductor, whom police say suffered a single gunshot wound to his torso, was not officially identified beyond his suburban hometown of Homewood, Ill.

The conductor was conscious and alert after being shot, according to police, and subsequent news reports describe the conductor's injuries as not life-threatening. He remains in a hospital.

Investigators and the DuPage County States' Attorney Office are consulting on potential charges, a Naperville police spokesperson tells Trains News Wire. At last report, the man remained in custody.

The eastbound Southwest Chief arrived in Naperville two hours late at 4:43 p.m., and the shooting was reported to police two minutes later. Witnesses said the suspect fired a handgun from the train hitting the conductor who was lying on the platform when officers arrived.

The Amtrak Police Department also is investigating the incident.

"With the assistance of the assistant conductor and several passengers, a suspect was taken into custody by the Naperville Police Department without further incident," Amtrak spokesman Marc Magliari tells Trains News Wire. "This senseless and random act of violence is under investigation, and [Amtrak police are] working closely with local law enforcement personnel.

"There were no injuries to other crew members or the nearly 240 passengers. Amtrak thanks Naperville emergency responders, Metra and BNSF Railway for their assistance last night."

The shooting delayed No. 4 more than three hours, and Amtrak held trains for connecting passengers at Union Station in Chicago 28 track miles to the east, Magliari adds. Inbound and outbound Metra commuter trains on the BNSF Railway line were held for up to an hour during the investigation.

Amtrak prohibits passengers from carrying firearms and ammunition but allows them as checked baggage with some restrictions. Among the restrictions are notifying Amtrak at least 24 hours in advance.

While there is some random checking of passengers before boarding, there is no routine screening for weapons or other contraband.

NEWSWIRETrains News Wire

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