Second arrest made in DART train death

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by CYNTHIA VEGA and DAVID SCHECHTER

Bio | Email | Follow: @davidschechter

WFAA

Posted on November 23, 2011 at 2:47 PM

Updated Wednesday, Nov 23 at 6:16 PM

Dragging DART death location

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DALLAS -- Dallas police said a second suspect has been arrested in the death of Octavius Lanier. The search continues for at least two more boys between the ages of 12 and 14 accused of slamming Octavius Lanier up against a moving DART train, leading to his death.

Police have identified more suspects, who they are questioning.
   
Police arrested one teen already, but said he's a juvenile, so they won't release his name. Police said they believe the teens may have been trying to rob 19-year-old Lanier of a cell phone when they pushed him up against a moving train at the MLK DART station just after 6:30 p.m. Tuesday.
    
Lanier got his leg caught between the platform and the moving train. The driver, not knowing what was happening, kept going. The southbound train dragged Lanier 30 feet. He severed a major artery and died at a nearby hospital soon afterwards.

Neighbor Maricarmen Gonzalez described Lanier as a good kid who spent a lot of time with her family. He watched her family's house while they were away.

"I feel sad about it," Gonzalez said. "Because he was a really nice person."
   
Rider Parisienne Bailey told us she is not surprised by what happened. She says this time of year, robbery attempts happen everywhere. The mother of a two year old says she takes no chances during her weekly commutes aboard DART. She says she carries mace to protect herself.
    
Bailey says policing aboard DART is sufficient

“The police and everything is real good,” said Baily. “Sometimes that can’t catch everyone.”
 
Rider Terrence Stewart is not so sure.

“They need more security at the stations,” said Stewart.” You got some people that get you that’s just ignorant.”
 
DART spokesperson Mark Ball said two fare enforcement officers were on duty at MLK last night. Overall, he said DART has 200 police officers who oversee all 54 stations, 7-days a week. He said the officers ride the trains, patrol the platforms and keep an eye on parking lots.
    
Unlike last year, DART stations now have surveillance cameras. Dallas police are now reviewing the video taken at the MLK Station during Tuesday night's dragging. News 8 has requested the footage, but police said it may not be released due to the underage suspects.
 
Ball said DART has spent the last year installing surveillance cameras at all 54 stations to help deter crime. That added security cost DART $6 million.

E-mail cvega@wfaa.com and dschechter@wfaa.com

 

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