A Transportation Security Administration agent on his way home from work was assaulted by a group of juveniles Monday night on a Metro Transit light-rail train, continuing a recent spate of violence on Twin Cities public transportation.
The man, 67, told police that a group of eight teenagers was acting rowdy as they prepared to get off the northbound Blue Line train at the 46th Street Station around 10:35 p.m. One of the teens allegedly grabbed the man’s hair, which set off a skirmish in the train car, according to a Metro Transit police report.
The man then told the teen to “keep your hands off me” and followed that by using a racial slur, the police report said. The report noted the man said he regretted using the slur.
The scuffle continued with pushing and shoving, and a teen grabbed the man’s hair again, the police report said. The man was hit seven to eight times in the head and suffered a laceration on his head and across his forehead, but he declined medical attention, the report said.
Metro Transit spokesman Howie Padilla said the incident remains under investigation and as of Friday no arrests had been made.
The incident comes as serious crimes on light-rail trains, including robberies, aggravated assaults and theft, are up over 2018. On Tuesday, a man attacked a teenage girl on a Metro Transit bus in South St. Paul. The girl stabbed him in apparent self-defense, authorities said.
It also comes less than a month after 75-year-old Shirwa Hassan Jibril was beaten after he got off a Metro Transit bus at the Chicago-Lake Transit Center in south Minneapolis on Nov. 6. Jibril, a respected Somali elder, had asked a group of young men on the bus to quiet down. One of them, Leroy Davis-Miles, 23, is accused of following Jibril off the bus and punching him in the face. Jibril was knocked to the pavement and died six days later.
Davis-Miles was charged with second-degree murder.