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Stranger Pushed Man Onto Blue Line Tracks, Got Away, Report Says

By Kelly Bauer | September 7, 2017 9:56am
 A man who was pushed onto the Blue Line tracks by a stranger escaped only with the help of passersby, according to a report.
A man who was pushed onto the Blue Line tracks by a stranger escaped only with the help of passersby, according to a report.
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DNAinfo/Tanveer Ali

THE LOOP — A man was pushed onto the Blue Line tracks by a stranger and escaped only with the help of passersby, according to a report.

The attack — first reported by the Tribune on Wednesday — happened Aug. 1 in the Blue Line's  Washington Street subway station.

A CTA representative described it as an isolated incident in a statement.

The victim was in the Washington station when a man pushed him off the train platform without saying a word, said Officer Michael Carroll, a Chicago Police Department spokesman.

The victim, 46-year-old Ben Benedict, told the Tribune he and his attacker were the only ones on the platform when the man pushed him. Benedict fell on the tracks, missing the electrified and potentially deadly third rail, and then looked up at the man who'd shoved him.

Benedict tried to pull himself onto the platform but the man pushed his hands away, according to the Tribune. Benedict, afraid a train could arrive, screamed for help. Several people crowded around Benedict and pulled him to safety, and the man who'd pushed Benedict ran away.

The incident was reported to police the next day, and an investigation is ongoing, Carroll said. The attacker was described as a white 30- to 35-year-old man.

Benedict told the CTA his attacker stood 5-foot-8 to 5-foot-10, with a medium build, sandy brown beard, mustache and hair, the Tribune reported.

The victim reported having a sprained right wrist, Carroll said. 

"The Chicago Police Department is investigating the incident, and CTA is assisting that effort, including providing available video from our security camera system," according to a CTA statement. "This appears to be an isolated event. CPD and CTA do not believe there is any risk to the traveling public."