Altercation on Metro train spills onto Woodley Park station platform

June 17, 2013

An altercation on a Metro train Monday evening spilled onto the platform at the Woodley Park station, witnesses said.

“The control center was made aware of the incident by the train operator,” a Metro spokeswoman said. However, it was not clear from Metro exactly what happened.

Messages on Twitter gave the most vivid account of the incident on the Red Line, which occurred about 6:30, during the evening rush.

“A huge fight broke out,” read one of several tweets from a female passenger. “Bunch of kids attacking other riders. Scary.”

In a telephone interview, the woman said that she did not know exactly how the incident began but that she saw “a group of kids attacking another rider sitting across from them.”

She said some of the youths were pulling on the rider’s bag, in what she thought might have been an attempt to steal it. The man was punched in the face, and other riders appeared to come to his aid, the woman said.

When the train reached the station, she said, the youths spilled onto the platform with one or two of the passengers with whom they had tangled. The passengers got back on the train, and it continued on.

The female witness said passengers tried to reach the train operator over the intercom, but there was no indication that their attempts were successful, which she called worrisome.

Another Metro passenger tweeted that on his commute home Monday evening, he had seen “an 8-man brawl” on the platform at Woodley Park.

A Metro spokeswoman said Metro Transit Police received a report about 6:30 p.m. that two men were involved in a physical altercation at the station.

However, said spokeswoman Morgan Dye, the men were not fighting when the officers arrived. She said that no injuries were reported and that service was not affected.

In a later account, she said the fact that the train operator “was aware” of an incident “leads us to believe that something did start on the train.”

She said Metro was investigating the report of the intercom problem.

A third person, Nicholas Bouquet, said that when his train reached Woodley Park, the doors opened and “all of a sudden, I hear lots of shouting.”

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