header image

[Sign Up Now] to Receive Our FREE Daily SCVTV-SCVNews Digest by E-Mail

Inside
Weather
Santa Clarita CA
Clear
Clear
55°F
 
Calendar
Today in
S.C.V. History
February 28
1890 - Jenkins ranch hands Dolores Cook and George Walton of Castaic slain by rival William Chormicle and W.A. Gardener [story]
Dolores Cook


LOS ANGELES (USDOJ) – A train engineer at the Port of Los Angeles was arrested Wednesday morning on federal charges for allegedly running a locomotive at full speed off the end of rail tracks near the USNS Mercy.

Eduardo Moreno, 44, of San Pedro, was charged today in a criminal complaint with one count of train wrecking as a result of an incident Tuesday afternoon.

According to the criminal complaint filed in United States District Court, Moreno admitted in two separate interviews with law enforcement authorities that he intentionally derailed and crashed the train near the Mercy.

Moreno ran the train off the end of tracks, and crashed through a series of barriers before coming to rest more than 250 yards from the Mercy. No one was injured in the incident, and the Mercy was not harmed or damaged in any way. The incident did result in the train leaking a substantial amount of fuel oil, which required clean up by fire and other hazardous materials personnel.

The train crash was witnessed by a California Highway Patrol officer, who took Moreno into custody as he fled the scene. The Los Angeles Port Police then took custody of Moreno, conducted an interview and obtained permission to search his residence. The FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force and the Port of Los Angeles Police are now leading the investigation.

The CHP officer who witnessed the crash reported seeing “the train smash into a concrete barrier at the end of the track, smash into a steel barrier, smash into a chain-link fence, slide through a parking lot, slide across another lot filled with gravel, and smash into a second chain-link fence,” according to the affidavit in support of the criminal complaint. When the CHP officer contacted Moreno, he made a series of spontaneous statements, including, “You only get this chance once. The whole world is watching. I had to. People don’t know what’s going on here. Now they will.”

In his first interview with the Los Angeles Port Police, Moreno acknowledged that he “did it,” saying that he was suspicious of the Mercy and believing it had an alternate purpose related to COVID-19 or a government takeover, the affidavit states. Moreno stated that he acted alone and had not pre-planned the attempted attack. While admitting to intentionally derailing and crashing the train, he said he knew it would bring media attention and “people could see for themselves,” referring to the Mercy, according to the affidavit.

In a second interview with FBI agents, Moreno stated that “he did it out of the desire to ‘wake people up,’” according to the affidavit. “Moreno stated that he thought that the U.S.N.S. Mercy was suspicious and did not believe ‘the ship is what they say it’s for.’”

The Los Angeles Port Police reviewed video recorded from the locomotive’s cab, according to the affidavit. One video shows the train clearly moving at a high rate of speed before crashing through various barriers and coming into close proximity to three occupied vehicles. A second video shows Moreno in the cab holding a lighted flare.

Moreno was held overnight on local charges, and he was turned over to FBI agents this morning. Moreno is expected to make an initial appearance in federal court this afternoon.

A criminal complaint contains allegations that a defendant has committed a crime. Every defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

The train wrecking charge alleged in the criminal complaint carries a statutory maximum penalty of 20 years in federal prison.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Reema M. El-Amamy, Christine M. Ro and William M. Rollins of the Terrorism and Export Crimes Section with support from Trial Attorney Taryn Meeks of the Counterterrorism Section at the Department of Justice’s National Security Division.

 

Comment On This Story
COMMENT POLICY: We welcome comments from individuals and businesses. All comments are moderated. Comments are subject to rejection if they are vulgar, combative, or in poor taste.
REAL NAMES ONLY: All posters must use their real individual or business name. This applies equally to Twitter account holders who use a nickname.

1 Comment

  1. Arthur says:

    So he is a Hispanic Supremacist Conspiracy nut…

Leave a Comment


SCV NewsBreak
LOCAL NEWS HEADLINES
Friday, Feb 26, 2021
Modified Sand Canyon Resort Project Up for Review
The Sand Canyon Resort project is scheduled to return before the Santa Clarita Planning Commission Tuesday with a series of revisions, following multiple concerns raised by both commissioners and residents.
Friday, Feb 26, 2021
Friday COVID-19 Roundup: SCV Cases Total 26,045; Nearly 2 Million Doses Administered in County
Los Angeles County Public Health officials on Friday confirmed 144 new deaths and 1,838 new cases of COVID-19 countywide, with 26,045 total cases in the Santa Clarita Valley.
Friday, Feb 26, 2021
State on Track to Reach Capacity Goal of 3 Million Vaccines Per Week, Pending Available Supply
California Department of Public Health officials announced on Feb. 26 that California is on track to create the capacity to administer 3 million vaccinations per week by March 1.
Keep Up With Our Facebook

Latest Additions to SCVNews.com
1890 - Jenkins ranch hands Dolores Cook and George Walton of Castaic slain by rival William Chormicle and W.A. Gardener [story]
Dolores Cook
1950 - Ex-Mrs. William S. Hart appears in court to challenge will that leaves Hart Park & Mansion to L.A. County [story]
Winifred Westover
The Sand Canyon Resort project is scheduled to return before the Santa Clarita Planning Commission Tuesday with a series of revisions, following multiple concerns raised by both commissioners and residents.
Modified Sand Canyon Resort Project Up for Review
Los Angeles County Public Health officials on Friday confirmed 144 new deaths and 1,838 new cases of COVID-19 countywide, with 26,045 total cases in the Santa Clarita Valley.
Friday COVID-19 Roundup: SCV Cases Total 26,045; Nearly 2 Million Doses Administered in County
The Girl Scouts of Greater Los Angeles announced on Feb. 26 that Kenya Yarbrough will lead its newly-created and first-ever Diversity, Equity, Inclusivity, Access, and Advocacy Initiative.
Girl Scouts of Greater Los Angeles Launches First-Ever Diversity and Advocacy Department
The Valley Industry Association will welcome College of the Canyons Chancellor Dr. Dianne G. Van Hook as the keynote speaker for the March VIA Virtual Series taking place Tuesday, March 16, from 11:00 a.m to 12:15 p.m.
March 16: VIA Virtual Series with Dr. Dianne G. Van Hook
The city of Santa Clarita’s Planning Commission will hold a regular meeting virtually Tuesday, March 2, at 6:00 p.m.
March 2: Planning Commission Virtual Regular Meeting
The Child and Family Center's Domestic Violence Program is set to host its fourth annual "Night of Expression" art exhibit on Saturday, Feb. 27, in recognition of Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month.
Feb. 27: Child and Family Center to Host Virtual Teen Dating Violence Awareness Art Exhibit
California Department of Public Health officials announced on Feb. 26 that California is on track to create the capacity to administer 3 million vaccinations per week by March 1.
State on Track to Reach Capacity Goal of 3 Million Vaccines Per Week, Pending Available Supply
Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital is set to host events and classes in March to celebrate National Nutrition Month.
Henry Mayo to Host Events, Classes for National Nutrition Month
The college district received the best rating possible in an independent audit of its general obligation bond expenditures.
Independent Audit Finds College District in Full Compliance
After being shuttered for almost a year due to pandemic restrictions, Mountasia Family Fun Center has been purchased by MB2 Group.
MB2 Group Purchases Mountasia Family Fun Center
The California Department of Motor Vehicles announced a new round of extensions for commercial driver’s licenses expiring through May 31 that will help commercial drivers focus on delivering essential products and supplies during the COVID-19 emergency.
DMV Extends Expiring Commercial Driver’s Licenses Through May
1923 - U.S. release of Charles Chaplin film "The Pilgrim," partially shot at Saugus Train Station & Newhall First Presbyterian Church [watch]
The Pilgrim
Fry's Electronics, the consumer electronics retailer, announced Wednesday that it is going out of business after nearly 36 years.
Fry’s Electronics Closing All Its Stores
The Los Angeles County Department of Consumer and Business Affairs (DCBA) announced Thursday the upcoming launch of the Los Angeles Online Dispute Resolution (LA-ODR) program, in collaboration with the Superior Court of California, Los Angeles County and its Dispute Resolution Program (DRP), and the Center for Conflict Resolution.
L.A. County Launches Program to Help Litigants Settle Cases Online
A former manager of the Valencia COVID-19 testing lab is being sued by the operator for breaching her contract after she accused the company of poor performance.
PerkinElmer Suing Whistleblower for Breach of Contract
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed Thursday 132 new deaths and 2,072 new cases of COVID-19, with 25,990 total cases in the Santa Clarita Valley.
Thursday COVID-19 Roundup: SCV Cases Nearing 26,000; L.A. County Reaches 100 MIS-C Cases in Children
Three hundred sixty-six feature films are eligible for the 2020 Academy Awards, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced today.
Academy Announces 366 Feature Films Eligible for 2020 Best Picture Oscar
Hannah Cumming is exactly the type of player Master's women's soccer head coach Curtis Lewis appreciates.
Hannah Cumming Signs with TMU
Santa Clarita City Council members declined Tuesday to administer $6.8 million in state rental assistance funds for eligible residents who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and let the state handle those dollars but approved creating a program for them with $6.3 million from the federal government.
Rental Aid Program Coming to Eligible Santa Clarita Residents Impacted by Pandemic
The Santa Clarita City Council Legislative Committee will hold a special meeting virtually Friday, Feb. 26, at 2:00 p.m. 
Feb. 26: City Council Legislative Committee Virtual Special Meeting
As Los Angelenos envision their future — whether it’s housing, parks or wellness — there is much they can learn from the past.
CSUN Collaborates with Tataviam, Indigenous Communities to Create Virtual, Ecological History Map
Flair Cleaners, Southern California’s leading eco-friendly dry cleaner, is hosting its 6th Annual Flair Cares Food Drive, Hang Up Hunger, through March 31
Annual Flair Cares Food Drive Underway
%d bloggers like this: