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Engineer charged in deadly Amtrak crash

Engineer charged in deadly Amtrak crash

In addition to the eight people killed, more than 200 people were injured in the crash.

To avoid a conflict of interest, prosecutors referred the case against Bostian to Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro's office. The attorney general's office said it is reviewing the judge's order and there is an option to appeal the order.

National Transportation Safety Board investigators said the train was traveling at 105 miles (170 kilometers) an hour, twice the speed limit, when the driver slammed on the emergency brakes just before the crash.

An earlier story appears below.

Two days after prosecutors announced they would not bring criminal charges against an Amtrak engineer involved in a 2015 derailment, a Philadelphia judge has ordered his arrest.

He is additionally charged with one count of risking a catastrophe and several counts of reckless endangerment, which go beyond what was included in a private criminal complaint ordered by Philadelphia Municipal Court President Judge Marsha Neifeld.

Though the National Transportation Safety Board had previously ruled that the derailment was caused by Bostian, of NY, when he lost "situational awareness" due to being distracted by the radio, the DA's office found on Tuesday that there was not enough "evidence sufficient to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the engineer "consciously" disregarded the risk" of an imminent crash. Bostian lives near Boston, according to the judge's order.

Kline believes that Bostian, now 34 and still on unpaid administrative leave with Amtrak, should at least face reckless endangerment charges, if not the more serious charges that require a finding of intent.

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Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams previously declined to file charges against the engineer. They found no evidence he was under the influence of drugs or alcohol or distracted by a cellphone.

Bostian has a personal-injury lawsuit pending against Amtrak.

Lawyer Thomas R. Kline, who had sought the private complaint on the Jacobs family's behalf, said the charges wouldn't have happened "had a courageous family, the Jacobs family, not stood up against the decision of a local prosecutor not to press charges".

The train had left Philadelphia minutes before, heading toward NY. The federal organization focused on a radio conversation between Bostian, a dispatcher and a SEPTA Regional Rail engineer who claimed rocks were being thrown at his vehicle around Frankford Junction, where Bostian's train was traveling.

"If we are to let operators off the hook with the mere claim of not having memory, then it invites every single one of them to do it", Mongeluzzi said at a Thursday press conference.

A federal judge in October approved a record $265 million settlement for the accident victims.

Since the derailment, Amtrak has installed automatic-braking technology known as positive train control, which was not installed at the time of the incident.


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