LUTHERVILLE, Md. (WJZ) ―
The mystery surrounding the deaths of two teens killed on the light rail tracks takes another turn. Two new agencies are getting involved in the investigation.
Jul 9, 2009 2:01 pm US/Eastern
MTA Confirm Timeline Of Light Rail Accident
Mary Bubala reports Seventeen-year-olds Connor Peterson and Kyle Wankmiller lived together like stepbrothers. Their family says it's best they both died during Sunday's light rail accident because neither would have coped without their best friend.
"I want closure. I really do. These were my babies," said Gary Peterson.
It appears the teens were walking northbound on the south track. Though they shouldn't have been on the tracks, Connor's dad and Kyle's mom are questioning how a train operator could not see the boys.
"We're getting really angry. We get on scenario, then we get this, that, this...and none of it makes any sense," said Amy Wankmiller.
Now the MTA has stepped aside as lead investigators.
"We will work in partnership with the county but we've asked them to take the lead out of respect for the family," said Paul Wiedefeld.
Train evidence and data is still being collected. The MTA confirms this basic timeline: at 2:10, a northbound train hit debris, disabling it. At 2:17, all trains switched to a single track. The family says the teens left the house between 2 and 2:30. MTA video captured a train hitting the boys at 2:55. At 3:50, police called the family.
"We have tape of the boys in the track being hit," Wiedefeld said. "That's all being explored and investigated about what happened, the whole sequence of events."
The boys were hit just past a curve. MTA says the train could have been going up to 50 miles per hour, but in the end, the driver of the train that hit then did not report the accident.
"I answered the phone like I always do when either one of the boys call: `Hi, sweetie, what's up?' It was an officer. He said, `There's been an accident.' And then everything just fell apart," Wankmiller said. "Why couldn't the conductor have seen them?"
Investigators have asked for an NTSB expert to recreate the crash.
Baltimore County's state's attorney will sort through the evidence to determine if criminal charges should be filed. This is standard procedure whenever there is a death.
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