Northeast Regional 188 - Accident In Philadelphia

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Re: Northeast Regional 188 - Accident In Philadelphia

Postby n2cbo » Tue Feb 06, 2018 1:13 pm

MCL1981 wrote:Pennsylvania law defines involuntary manslaughter as:
A person is guilty of involuntary manslaughter when as a direct result
of the doing of an unlawful act in a reckless or grossly negligent manner, or
the doing of a lawful act in a reckless or grossly negligent manner, he
causes the death of another person

Acting recklessly would require intent, which obviously is not the case, so that's out. Acting grossly negligent will probably be a very hard sell. It also requires some kind of intent to ignore the dangers. Which again obviously is not the case here. Gross negligence is a very specific term in the eyes of the law. So is recklessness. And neither of them apply here. This looks more like political and career grandstanding than a legitimate prosecution.

My guess is that eventually, he will be exonerated, however with all of the legal costs, he will probably be financially ruined. Not to mention all the stress that will affect his health.
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Re: Northeast Regional 188 - Accident In Philadelphia

Postby SemperFidelis » Wed Feb 07, 2018 12:20 pm

The charges have been brought against Mr. Bostian once again: ... wreck.html
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Re: Northeast Regional 188 - Accident In Philadelphia

Postby John_Perkowski » Wed Feb 07, 2018 7:27 pm

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Re: Northeast Regional 188 - Accident In Philadelphia

Postby BandA » Sun Feb 11, 2018 12:29 am

The charges were previously dismissed by a municipal court judge. In my state they pass the serious cases up to a "superior" court. And this is where one of the victim's family required the prosecution after the district attorney declined to prosecute, which is allowed under PA law.
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Re: Northeast Regional 188 - Accident In Philadelphia

Postby justalurker66 » Sun Feb 11, 2018 8:11 am

In May 2015 the named engineer was the person responsible for operating Northeast Regional 188. He was the sole person in the cab when the train accelerated and entered a 50 MPH curve at 106 MPH. Despite much Internet speculation there is no evidence that said engineer ducked or was operating the train abnormally at the time of the incident, other than accelerating at a location where he should have been slowing for the curve. Officials decided that he "lost his bearings". Eight of his passengers lost their lives.

In 2016 Amtrak paid a $265 million court ordered settlement in the civil case.
Criminal charges against the engineer were initially dropped by the prosecutor. He felt that he could not prove the case.

In May 2017 as the deadline for criminal charges approached the victim's families went to a municipal court judge who made the decision to compel misdemeanor charges. (Such a process can only compel misdemeanor charges. There is no requirement to approve the request.)
The attorney general added his own felony charge, separate from the charges requested or able to be requested by the families.

In September 2017 a different municipal court judge held a preliminary hearing and threw out the charges stating "I feel it’s more likely an accident than criminal negligence". (Note that it was stated as "more likely" - not an absolute ruling that it was not criminal negligence.) The attorney general appealed the dismissal of charges.

In December 2017 a senior judge (Court of Common Pleas, Trial Division - Criminal) agreed to reinstate the charges. The judge said evidence at the hearing should have been sufficient to warrant a trial.

Arraignment will be February 21st.
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