Amtrak engineer Brandon Bostian charged in deadly Amtrak crash by Pennsylvania AG

A Philadelphia judge has ruled that there is "probable cause" to charge Amtrak engineer Brandon Bostian in the deadly 2015 train derailment. In view of our earlier decision not to file charges, we have referred this prosecution to the Pennsylvania Attorney General.

On Wednesday, the family of 39-year-old Rachel Jacobs, who was killed in the crash, filled out a private citizen criminal complaint, which the DA's office again declined.

"These charges include eight counts of involuntary manslaughter, one count of causing or risking a catastrophe and numerous counts of reckless endangerment, which go beyond what was included in the private criminal complaint ordered by Philadelphia Municipal Court President Judge Marsha Neifield", Shapiro said.

"That was clearly wrong, as evidenced by the attorney general not only reversing course but adding charges", he said.

Under state law, Friday marks the two-year deadline to charge Bostian in the May 12, 2015, crash, which killed eight people and injured more than 180.

The criminal case is sure to bring new scrutiny to the National Transportation Safety Board finding that Bostian had lost "situational awareness" on the curve in North Philadelphia. Federal investigators determined that Bostian allowed the train to speed up to 106 miles per hour in a curve suitable for only half of that speed. Bostian was not under the influence of drugs at the time of the crash, nor was he distracted by his cellphone. "That's for a jury to decide in this case, as to whether or not Mr. Bostian is credible or incredible". However, federal safety investigators concluded that nothing struck the train prior to it crashing. Bostian was an experienced engineer.

Pennsylvania's attorney general has chose to bring charges against an Amtrak engineer in connection with a 2015 crash that left eight people dead and hundreds hurt in Philadelphia.




Bostian claimed something had struck his train, possibly a thrown rock, and he was unable to recall the moments just before the derailment.

Victims' lawyers have questioned why Bostian would have sped up, rather than slow down, if he had been startled by something striking the train.

That, according to lawyer Robert Mongeluzzi who also represents victims, should not give him a pass.

"This is the second anniversary of a horrific event", Mongeluzzi said.

The attorney's general office did not say when Bostian will be arraigned.

A federal judge signed off on Amtrak's $295 million settlement with the crash victims a year ago. Jacobs, a technology executive, was a wife and mother. A Naval Academy midshipman and a man from Howard County were among the dead.

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