GARDNER — During a train versus ATV accident that took a 28-year-old Essex man's life Wednesday, a passenger of the train appears to have taken advantage of the distraction and tried to steal money from the train's dining car.
Brad Emanuelson was pronounced deceased on scene at 1 p.m. by Grundy County Coroner John Callahan after his ATV was clipped by a train while he rode along the tracks.
At about 12:30 p.m., Emanuelson was riding the ATV on the railroad right-of-way about 1/8 of a mile southwest of the railroad crossing at Maher Road and Old Route 66, in Gardner. He was driving with two other people, who were also driving ATVs.
Emanuelson was traveling northeast, toward Gardner, on the east side of the Union Pacific tracks, said Gardner Fire Protection District Chief Terry Jensen. The driver must not have heard the train and got clipped from behind, he said.
Once struck, the ATV rolled and tumbled about 50 feet, and likely struck the train again. The driver was found about five feet from the ATV.
The Amtrak train was still on scene well into the afternoon Wednesday with about 140 passengers traveling from Texas, Jensen said.
One of those passengers decided to try and steal $800 from the dining car while the train was stopped due to the accident, said Sheriff Kevin Callahan.
"The passenger was seen milling around the dining car, which was not open. Two employees saw the guy in there and entered at each end to catch him," said Sheriff Callahan.
The man took off running and the employees chased him through the train cars before he jumped off the train. The employees notified the conductor, who told the Grundy County Sheriff's deputies who were already surrounding the train due to the accident.
As more sheriff's deputies arrived on scene, they saw the man running and apprehended him, said Sheriff Callahan.
The man gave the name of Kwane Mosley, 42, he said, but Wednesday evening sheriff's police were still confirming his identity to charge him with theft. He had no luggage with him and had transportation tickets from numerous states.
The crash is being investigated by the Grundy County Coroner's office, the Grundy County Sheriff's Department and railroad police.