Neuroscientist pushed stranger onto CTA Blue Line tracks, wouldn't allow him back on platform, police say

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A North Side man has been charged with attempted murder for pushing a man onto the tracks last summer at a Blue Line station in the Loop, police said. (WLS)

A North Side man has been charged with attempted murder for pushing a man onto the tracks last summer at a Blue Line station in the Loop, police said. He appeared in court on Tuesday.

Police used surveillance video to find him.

Chad M. Estep, 34, was arrested after being identified as the suspect who pushed the 46-year-old man at the Washington Blue Line Station on August 1, according to Chicago Police.

ABC7 has not seen the video, but in court Tuesday, prosecutors said they have CTA surveillance that shows the accused, leaning against a pillar on the train platform watching his victim, then coming up from behind and shoving him with both hands onto the tracks.

He then "menaced" the victim, refusing to allow him to climb back onto the platform until bystanders intervened and offered assistance, police said.

Estep, a neuroscientist with a PhD from Northwestern University, was in bond court Tuesday.

According to police, Estep was visibly intoxicated when he attacked his victim, a man he did not know, who was returning from a Cubs game. The victim barely missed hitting the electrified third rail. In court, prosecutors said Estep was caught on surveillance video not just pushing the man, but blocking his ability to get back onto the platform and then blocking others from coming to the man's aid. He finally made it to safety moments before the Forest Park-bound Blue Line train passed through.

Estep's defense attorney today calling evidence against him "minimal."

"Mr. Estep is a young professional. He has a PhD from Northwestern. He graduated back in March. He works as a data analyst and lives with his wife quietly. He's a productive member of society. It's a shame Mr. Estep has to go through all this. The allegations put forward by the state are extremely serious and there's, as far as I can see, very minimal evidence against Mr. Estep, we're going to do our own further investigation and I expect Mr. Estep to be exonerated," said Vadim Glozman, Estep's defense attorney.

Estep was arrested at 5:10 p.m. Monday at his home in the 1700 block of West Ellen, police said.

He is charged with felony counts of attempted murder and aggravated battery in a public place, and a misdemeanor count of trespassing for being on the platform without paying, police said.

Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.

Related Topics:
attempted murderCTAfall on tracksChicagoLoop

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