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Review of transit security procedures planned following fatal attack
Julia Parrish, CTV Edmonton
Published Wednesday, January 2, 2013 6:47PM MST
Last Updated Thursday, January 3, 2013 6:28AM MST
It was the first-ever homicide in the city LRT's 34-year history, but the violent assault that led to the death of a 29-year-old man last week has placed LRT security procedures under the microscope.
Last Friday, Dec. 28, John Hollar, 29, was brutally assaulted on a train, as it left Coliseum Station that afternoon.
Officials said other passengers in that car used emergency buttons to alert the driver, who was able to monitor the situation using an on-board camera and relay that information to police.
“As our standard procedure, the motorman went to the next station, which was Belvedere,” ETS Operational Support Director Ron Gabruck told CTV News. “[He] stopped there, and opened the doors to allow all the patrons inside that train car to exit.”
Transit officials said the attacks stopped when the train arrived at Belvedere station – and officials hoped the attacker would leave the train with the rest of the passengers, but he didn’t.
At this point, heavy traffic around Belvedere made the station difficult to access – and officials decided to let the train continue to Clareview, the end of the line.
“That 3 minutes is a lot shorter time than waiting for first responders to get through traffic, and that’s if they’re close by, and then to make their way up to the platform at Belvedere, which is much more difficult to access,” Gabruck said.
Investigators are working on discovering what provoked the attack, but they said the victim and the suspect knew each other.
Now, officials are planning to review the incident, to make sure further adjustments to their procedures could be made.
“We want to know that the decisions made were the best ones under the circumstances,” Gabruck said. “If there’s any gap in our policy or procedure we’ll address those gaps.”
With files from Amanda Anderson