Edward Klein, 79, of West Allis, Wis., appeared in DuPage County bond court Friday morning, charged in Tuesday’s train station shooting in which the Amtrak conductor, a 45-year-old man from Homewood, was seriously injured.
Prosecutors said Klein was returning from an aborted trip to Las Vegas and was planning on catching a train to Milwaukee, but he tried to leave the train at a scheduled stop in Naperville.
He faces attempted murder and aggravated battery charges. He was ordered held in lieu of $1.5 million bail.
When Amtrak personnel prevented Klein from getting off, he became enraged, drew a pistol before leaning out a window and shooting the conductor, who was on the platform, once in the torso, prosecutors said
Other passengers subdued Klein. The conductor, who underwent emergency surgery, remains in intensive care, prosecutors said.
Klein was a retired federal protective services officer who resides at an independent living facility in the Milwaukee suburb, Assistant State’s Attorney Claudia Fantauzzo said.
During the bond hearing, Klein did not appear to grasp the nature of the situation. He said several times that he would be leaving tomorrow and declined the services of a public defender.
“I don’t need one if I’m leaving,” he said.
Other passengers and rail personnel had said Klein had been exhibiting unusual behavior during the train trip from Kansas City. Klein had planned on traveling to Las Vegas but changed his mind and had gotten off the train in Kansas City to return home, the prosecutor said.
Klein told authorities he was angry that he would not be allowed to leave the train at Naperville.
The prosecutor said that Klein told authorities, “I had built up all this anger and I blew him away.”
The suspect was stopped by passengers after the shooting while the train was stopped at the station at 105 E. Fourth Ave.
The suspect was headed to Chicago, the next stop after Naperville, said Naperville police Cmdr. Lou Cammiso. He said he did not know where the man boarded the train.
The conductor was taken to Edward Hospital in Naperville.
The train had 235 passengers on board during its Naperville stop.
The 4:45 p.m. incident led police to immediately shut down the rail line and block off portions of Fourth and Fifth avenues around the station. Once it was determined there was no further threat to the public, passengers were allowed to exit the train from the north end of the station. Many were transported to other stations by Pace bus or picked up by friends and family. Some waited for train traffic to resume, which happened about 8 p.m.
Earlier this week, Amtrak spokesman Marc Magliari called the incident unusual, noting that firearms are prohibited as carry-on items. However, they may be stowed as checked luggage with certain restrictions.
Magliari said the railroad does random…