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CTA union official says attacks on workers might be related

Updated: August 9, 2013 1:40AM

Two female CTA employees were verbally or physically assaulted at train stations this week, and a CTA union official said the incidents might be related.

Chicago Police are investigating both attacks, which were captured by surveillance video.

A man approached a 40-year-old female CTA employee about 6:30 a.m. Monday at the Pulaski station on the Pink Line, 2005 S. Pulaski Rd., and made lewd comments, police said.

Robert Kelly, president of the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 308, issued a statement late Wednesday describing the comments as an “extreme graphic request.”

The man then exposed himself to the employee, and the incident was classified the incident as a public indecency, according to police.

Kelly said the CTA employee, a customer assistant, screamed and police said a witness intervened and the man fled.

About 5 a.m. Wednesday, a man attacked a 47-year-old female CTA employee on a platform at the Chicago station on the Blue Line, in the 800 block of North Milwaukee, police said.

“The customer assistant was grabbed and forced into a small room and forced down to the ground by her neck (choking),” Kelly said in the statement.

The woman screamed and the man ran away, Kelly said. The woman refused medical attention, police said.

“This is very troublesome for our members and all women out there,” Kelly said in the statement. “Next time we might not be so lucky.”

The CTA gave police the surveillance video from station cameras, a CTA spokeswoman. CTA personnel also were notified of Wednesday’s incident as part of standard procedure.

Kelly said Thursday that the notification to CTA personnel included surveillance images from the attack on the manager at the Blue Line station. The employee from the Pink Line station incident on Monday saw the video from Wednesday’s attack and said it was the same man who exposed himself, Kelly said. He said the employee at the Pink Line is “very confident it’s the same person.”

Police could not say whether the same man is suspected in both incidents. They said detectives were investigating.

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