Red Line passenger wielded box cutter, jumped from moving train to escape robbers, prosecutors say

CHICAGO — A Red Line passenger pulled an emergency escape lever and jumped from a moving train to escape a group of robbers who attacked him in the Loop, prosecutors said Sunday.

Two men are charged with being part of the group, including one on bail for allegedly battering someone at the same station in July and on bail for allegedly driving a stolen car in September.

Terrance Hardy (L) and Gavon Easter | CPD; CWBChicago

The victim was riding a northbound train when five men approached him and asked for cigarettes around 1:42 a.m. Saturday, officials said. When he said he didn’t have any, the group closed in and started beating and robbing him.

Prosecutors said the victim, who lost $30 and cigarettes to the offenders, pulled out a box cutter to stop the attack. The group backed away, allowing him to pull the train’s emergency lever and then jump from the moving rail car at Roosevelt.

The group also exited at Roosevelt and started kicking the victim again. Three offenders escaped. But two others stayed on the platform, and CTA surveillance camera operators sent Chicago police officers to arrest them.

While watching the feed, officers allegedly saw one of the men throw an ammunition magazine into a trash can on the platform.

Prosecutors said the victim identified Gavon Easter, 19, and Terrance Hardy, 21, as two of the men who attacked and robbed him.

Hardy, who has no criminal background, is a high school graduate and lives with his mother, according to his defense attorney. Judge Kelly McCarthy ordered him to pay a $3,000 deposit toward bail to go home on electronic monitoring.

Easter is on bail for a misdemeanor battery charge stemming from an incident at the Roosevelt station on July 14. Two months later, he was given a recognizance bond by Judge Mary Marubio after he was charged with felony possession of a stolen motor vehicle on September 7.

He is charged with robbery, misdemeanor battery, and unlawful possession of ammunition. His defense attorney said he has two children and has worked at McDonald’s for about six weeks.

McCarthy ordered him to pay a $6,000 bail deposit to get out on an ankle monitor.

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