LONG BEACH (CBSLA) — A vigil was held Wednesday night for a man killed by a train a year ago and the man’s family released Metro security video of what the man’s mother claims shows an officer throwing her son on the tracks right in front of a train. The man died when he was run over by the train.
The struggle between 23-year-old Cesar Rodriguez and a Long Beach police officer on a Metro Rail platform was caught on camera.
Shot by security cameras aboard a Blue Line train, it happened one year ago and the family says the officer threw Rodriguez into the path of the oncoming train that took his life. Rodriguez’s sister says it took months for them to get the video.
“When we seen that video it was like a lot of the questions that we had as a family we were able to get them answered,” said Evelia Granados.
But the Long Beach Police Department says Rodriguez accidentally fell back during the scuffle with the officer.
CBSLA was there the night rescue crews responded.
The family says for 20 minutes Rodriguez was pinned between the train and platform. He later died at the hospital.
“He has family. He is able to go back to his family. My brother didn’t make it back home,” said Granados.
Police say Rodriguez was being stopped on suspicion of not paying his fare and then drugs were found on him and that’s when he tried to run from the officers. Then a fight between an officer and Rodriguez happened. The family’s attorney says the officer never should have tackled him so close to the tracks.
“It’s an example of just a complete disregard of safety,” said the attorney.
The Long Beach Police Department says the officer is still employed with them but they cannot comment any further because of the impending lawsuit.