An engineer was arrested for intentionally derailing his train in an attempt to crash into the USNS Mercy, a hospital ship docked in the Port of Los Angeles.
According to a complaint filed by the California Department of Justice, Eduardo Moreno, 44, was suspicious that the USNS Mercy had ties to the global pandemic and tried to warn people of a government takeover plot.
The affidavit stated that a California Highway Patrol officer witnessed the train crash 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."
The locomotive slowed to a halt 250 yards away from the docked ship.
The CHP officer arrested Moreno, who tried to run from the wreckage on foot.
#BREAKING Prosecutors say engineer deliberately ran train off tracks in attempt to smash the USNS Mercy hospital sh… https://t.co/mHLsQAy7BF— ABC7 Eyewitness News (@ABC7 Eyewitness News)1585782225.0
You can watch the news report of the crash site below.
Train Engineer Arrested For Derailing Train Near USNS Mercy youtu.be
The USNS Mercy arrived in Los Angeles last week to serve as a referral hospital for non-infected patients to relieve the burden on shore-based hospitals inundated with those affected by the respiratory illness.
The ship is equipped with 1,000 beds and capable of performing general surgeries.
Hospital ship USNS Mercy arrives in Los Angeles to support #COVID19 response efforts https://t.co/NdnIiWioDN— Breaking911 (@Breaking911)1585333119.0
Nobody was injured from Tuesday afternoon's incident. The Mercy remained intact and undamaged.
The affidavit did mention the derailed train leaked a substantial amount of fuel that required the clean-up efforts of "fire and other hazardous materials personnel."
@ABC7 Wtf was the game plan here?— Sabrina 🐝 (@Sabrina 🐝)1585782528.0
The locomotive was not the only thing that went off the rails.
Moreno made a series of nonsensical comments at the CHP officer, including:
"You only get this chance once."
For someone hellbent on his once-in-a-lifetime plot, the engineer did not come close to meeting his intended floating target.
Not by a longshot.
@ABC7 The loco loco guy would never have been successful at his attempt anyway. So much for #YOLO: https://t.co/2IZb5ndYUl— Militant Angeleno (@Militant Angeleno)1585790990.0
@PrisonPlanet Almost... 😂🤣😂🤣😂🤣 The Locomotive traveled about 100 yards form the end of the tracks, had around 300 y… https://t.co/lpALptY8Q3— Drunken Orwell (@Drunken Orwell)1585789390.0
@THX_1984 @PrisonPlanet How did he plan on steering it— 😷Bob Rob😷 (@😷Bob Rob😷)1585790662.0
@PrisonPlanet This is one of the stupidest things I've ever seen. There's no way that train was going to get anywhere near that ship— Jason Sabourin (@Jason Sabourin)1585789106.0
@PrisonPlanet What? How do you hit a boat with a train?— So Cal Girl (@So Cal Girl)1585788967.0
@PrisonPlanet Trains can't go wherever they want to. They aren't trucks. I'm so confused.— Justine Amos (@Justine Amos)1585789353.0
@PrisonPlanet Never bring a train to a ship fight.— Chris (@Chris)1585791815.0
@PrisonPlanet @Ron_Wilson_XY In Eduardo’s mind... https://t.co/pjIkrT4oy7— Dug (@Dug)1585793079.0
Before being taken into custody, Moreno also told the officer:
"The whole world is watching. I had to."
"People don't know what's going on here. Now they will."
But Twitter users already knew exactly what was going on.
@ABC7 That’s treason #deathpenalty— joey brezinski (@joey brezinski)1585782503.0
@ABC7 Some people just want to see the world burn— Countondanny (@Countondanny)1585782436.0
@ABC7 Try him as a terrorist in court— C Mills (@C Mills)1585783754.0
This person fears it's only a matter of time before others among us crack under the strain.
@ABC7 And we live and work with people like him, ready to snap at any moment— sirrah harris (@sirrah harris)1585783892.0
Hopefully security measures are tightened to prevent worse from happening.
@ABC7 Gov @GavinNewsom need to step up their security. You have hundreds of medical personnel on board, both milita… https://t.co/1FLz8XEnVo— El Jaun Dogh (@El Jaun Dogh)1585785097.0
@ABC7 @Msmariablack Some people are going to just crack under the pressure. ALL hospitals and police/fire/ambulance… https://t.co/lN9rXGdvon— Above Znoneofthe (@Above Znoneofthe)1585785359.0
In an interview conducted by the Los Angeles Port Police, Moreno admitted that he "did it" and that he was suspicious of the Mercy for somehow being involved with the virus responsible for the pandemic.
The affidavit said the engineer acted alone and had not pre-planned the attack.
In a second interview, Moreno admitted that he derailed the train in order to "wake people up."
He additionally stated that he did not believe "the ship is what they say it's for."
@ABC7 I hope he's charged with many hundreds of counts of attempted homicide.— AJ (@AJ)1585784161.0
The Los Angeles Port Police reviewed recorded footage obtained from the locomotive's cab.
One video showed the locomotive traveling at full speed, crashing into a number of barriers and coming within close proximity to three occupied vehicles.
A second recording showed Moreno from inside the train holding a lit flare.
The Justice Department charged Moreno with one count of train wrecking, which carries a maximum of 20 years in federal prison.
Fortunately for all on board the USNS Mercy, they were in the presence of the little engine that couldn't.