Woman waiting for bus at Union Station in critical condition after attack

·2 min read
LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 8, 2019 - The iconic main entrance facing Alameda Street of Los Angeles Union Station West on May 8, 2019 as it celebrates its 80th anniversary. The largest train terminal in the Western United States opened eight decades ago in May 1939. Over the last 8 years, Metro has invested tens of millions of dollars to restore and improve the landmark station which was designed by father and son architect team of John and Donald Parkinson with a blend of Spanish Colonial, Mission Revival and Art Deco architecture. Union Station began servicing 33 trains and 7,000 passengers per day and has evolved to a transportation center serving more than 100,000 passengers daily with 440 trains on 14 platforms. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)
A woman is in critical condition after being attacked Thursday morning at Union Station. (Los Angeles Times)

A woman is in critical condition after police said she was attacked by a homeless man Thursday morning while she was waiting at a bus stop at downtown Los Angeles' Union Station.

The victim, described as a woman in her late 60s or early 70s, was struck at a bus stop at East Cesar Chavez Avenue and North Vignes Street, LAPD Officer Drake Madison said. Authorities said the attack was unprovoked.

Paramedics took the woman to a nearby hospital. Authorities told KTLA-TV she is a nurse. County Supervisor Kathryn Barger said the woman works at Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center.

A man was arrested around 6:45 a.m. not far from Union Station after the attack. Kerry Bell, 48, of Los Angeles was booked on charges of attempted murder. His bail has been set at $2 million, according to the LAPD.

In a statement, Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority officials said that "Metro is appalled upon hearing of this incident. Metro’s highest concern is the safety of our customers, and along with our law enforcement partners, we have zero tolerance for crimes committed against our customers. Perpetrators will be aggressively investigated and prosecuted to the greatest extent of the law."

Metro said with these types of incidents, riders can use Metro’s Transit Watch App, call 888-950-SAFE (7233) or text (213) 788-2777.

Barger called the attack "shocking and heart-breaking" in a statement and asked for a full investigation.

"It is unacceptable for Metro bus riders to be susceptible to this type of violence. Our essential workers, such as this county nurse, often take public transportation at unconventional times and can become easy prey for violent actors," Barger said.

"Our county has an urgent need to work with public safety, mental health and transportation providers to create more safe and stable environments. Our essential workers are battling a pandemic and working long hours in tough conditions — at a minimum, they deserve that."

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.

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