South Bend teen 5th St. Joseph Co. train death since May 1

(File Photo)

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Authorities say a South Bend teenager is the fifth person killed by a train in St. Joseph County in the past two months.

South Bend police Lt. Gene Eyster says 16-year-old Elijah Brooks was walking along railroad timbers about 4 p.m. Saturday when a 92-car freight train struck him.

Eyster tells the South Bend Tribune that evidence suggests Brooks simply misjudged the train’s speed and distance from him. He was killed on impact.

Eyster says the train’s crew hit their emergency brakes as soon as they saw Brooks, but the train weighing about 3,700 tons took a half-mile to stop.

The death was the third apparent accidental death of a pedestrian on the tracks since May 1. Two other deaths were ruled suicides.

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