An 18-time convicted felon stabbed a CTA bus driver in the hand after the transit worker confronted him about stealing another passenger’s wallet on a bus in Old Town, prosecutors said Sunday.
The 37-year-old victim was driving an eastbound North Avenue bus near Sedgwick Street around 9:20 p.m. Friday when he saw Daniel Pelt, 63, take a passenger’s wallet from their grocery cart, Assistant State’s Attorney Andrea Williams said.
The driver stopped the bus and held Pelt by the shoulders to keep him from leaving while another passenger called 911, Williams said. But Pelt pulled out a knife, stabbed the driver in his hand, and fled out the bus’ rear door, according to Williams. Another passenger allegedly recorded video of Pelt escaping after the stabbing.
Police officers arrested Pelt at the Sedgwick Brown Line platform about 20 minutes later. He was identified as the assailant by the driver and a witness, Williams said. The incident was also recorded by CTA’s security cameras.
Pelt has 18 felony convictions, six misdemeanor convictions, and 18 bond forfeitures in his background according to Williams.
An assistant public defender said Pelt, whose children are all adults, suffers from mental health conditions.
He is charged with felony aggravated battery of a transit employee and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon. Judge David Navarro set bail at $50,000, meaning Pelt must post a $5,000 deposit to get out of jail.
He is due in court again on December 6.