PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — 27-year-old Lauren Lichtman says when she accidentally went past her usual 34th Street El stop Sunday morning on her way to work, she got off at the next stop, 40th Street, to head back.
It was a decision that changed her life.
Police say Lichtman, in a random attack, was shoved onto the El tracks by suspect Kenneth Grimes, who then pulled a knife and, as she sprawled injured on the tracks, threatened her, yelling, “kill, kill, kill.”
Lichtman, who suffered a broken collar-bone and bruises, told CBS 3’s Walt Hunter she was “lucky” and her injuries could have been far, far worse.
Fortunately, no train was approaching and she was able to climb back onto the platform. She also did not contact the electrified third rail that runs along side the track.
The victim says none of the passengers waiting on the platform helped her from the tracks and, instead of staying to provide statements to arriving officers, they boarded the next train, leaving her alone on the platform.
SEPTA Police Chief Tom Nestel says it’s always good for witnesses to dial “911” and stay nearby to provide information to investigators.
Fortunately, he says, SEPTA cameras helped track the suspect who was arrested a short time later nearby.
Lichtman says she looks forward to resuming her regular schedule, including riding the El.
The random attack, she says, is not representative of either SEPTA or the city where she lives.
The suspect is now being held behind bars on $250,000 bail.